The news item published in your esteem daily on 3rd July 2019, is definitely a very pertinent questions.
Last year I had an opportunity to stay a few nights in the newly built Salt Lake region of Kolkata city and I was deeply impressed by the excellent master plan together with the wonderful constructional technology and meticulous planning and management. Precisely, this is called the development. Kudos to the government administration, planners, builders and above all the conscious public.
The brief account precisely pointed out several major problems of Guwahati city like problem of load-shedding, insufficient supply of drinking water, failure of GMC, PHE, insufficient transport infrastructure, inefficient traffic management etc. Quite certainly, these problems can be eliminated with proper planning and management.
So far the question of load-shedding is concerned, it is known to all that Assam has tremendous scope for power generation from hydro-electricity, natural gas etc. In spite of this, the state is a total failure in power generation and severe power shortage still persists in Assam. Insincerity, inefficiency, and desire for personal benefit and mismanagement of government funds are the main reasons behind these which are ubiquitous in everywhere. A good example of this is the small 100 megawatt power expansion plant of Namrup Thermal which is still not able to reach the stage of commissioning even after 7 or 8 years of starting of construction. Several severe breakdowns like breaking of machineries, roof collapse etc occurred several times that reveals the poor build quality of the unit. The plant is still trying hard to reach the stage of commission. The same condition prevails in others too.
Similarly, the problem of drinking water in a place like Assam where there is abundance of water is not a problem that cannot be cured. Besides, GMC and PHE etc have miserably failed to provide the minimum facilities to the public i.e. the tax payers.
In case of traffic management, stringent law and excellent vigilance are the two extremely important requirements. Like Kolkata, Mumbai and other parts of India even in our neighbouring Shillong, the traffic rules are enforced in such a stern manner that the law breakers cannot escape from the claws of traffic management. This obviously constricts the number of accidents and crimes.
Hence, there is nothing wrong with Guwahati and Assam that cannot be cured. The main problem is that the people of Assam have to change their mindset. The public consciousness is a matter of utmost important. Selfishness, desire for easy and fast money, mismanagement of government funds are some of the prime reasons behind the pathetic situation of the State. Therefore, so long, the people of management of institutions, government officials and politicians do not sacrifice their personal benefits for the greater interest of the state as a whole, the development is simplly not to be up to the mark.
So, it is high time we realized the graveness of the situation and each and every responsible citizen must raise his/her voice in this unmistakable chorus of eradiation of social maladies. Let us put aside our selfishness and rededicate ourselves for the development of Assam before it reached the point of no return.
Ms. Juti Moni Bordoloi,
Sr. Lecturer & HOD,
Deptt. of Geography,
Moran College, Assam.