* Voters demand time-bound assurances from candidates
GUWAHATI: For majority of voters in East Gauhati constituency drinking water crisis is a major issue and they are demanding candidates contesting the assembly elections from the constituency to come out with a clear-cut and time bound solution for the same.
"Even though we have other issues, residents of my locality are worst hit by drinking water crisis. I am personally spending more than Rs 10,000 to purchase water from private suppliers. A van carrying 700 to 750 litres of water charges in between Rs 200 and Rs 250. We have told both the BJP and Congress candidates to lay top priority on the issue and demanded solid assurances to solve the issue," Nipankar Barua, a resident of Chandmari area said.
Barua is not alone. Residents of Lachit Nagar, Gandhi Basti, Sarania, Nabin Nagar, Rajgarh, Ulubari, Birubari, Roopnagar, Srimantapur have the same issue.
Even though the Guwahati Development Minister and sitting MLA from East Gauhati Siddhartha Bhattacharyya have assured the voters to solve the issue if the BJP retains power, Bhattacharyya have failed to spell out the deadline. The candidates from Congress, Assam Jatiya Parishad contesting the elections have assured the voters to solve issue without making any clear-cut plan.
On the other hand the deadline for completion of the Japan International Corporation Agency (JICA)-funded Guwahati South-Central Water Supply Project is yet to be fixed.
Such development is prevailing despite the visit of the External Affairs Minister Dr S. Jaishankar and Japan Ambassador to India Satoshi Suzuki to the Guwahati South-Central Water Supply Project site at Kharghuli in February this year. Both Dr Jaishankar and Suzuki had asked the implementing authorities of the Guwahati South-Central Water Supply Project to expedite execution and complete the scheme as early as possible.
The JICA-funded project with a proposed capacity of 191 MLD (millions of liters per day) was started in 2011. The deadline for commissioning the project was 2017.