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Nagaland Chief Minister commissions Kohima water supply project

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By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: Mar 27, 2021 1:27 am
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Neiphiu Rio and other at Zarü River project
Neiphiu Rio along with advisors and officials during the commissioning of Zarü River project on Friday (EM images)

Our Correspondent
Kohima, March 26 (EMN):
In what would come as a major relief to the citizens of Kohima, Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio on Friday commissioned the much-awaited ‘Augmentation of Water Supply to Kohima Town’ project which involves pumping of water from Zarü River to be supplied to the state capital.

The commissioning programme of the project, which started in 2012 and was targeted for completion during 2019-20, was held at Mima village under Kohima district. Its estimated cost is INR 46.73 crore with 90:10 funding pattern under the Ministry of Urban Development.

The water from this project is connected to the existing distribution system. Presently, about 3000 consumers from PR Hill, Chandmari, PWD, and parts of main town, are covered under the department’s water supply. With the augmentation of the project, it is expected to cover more wards and consumers, as distribution system has been improved and expanded.

Rio lauded the department for completing the project and urged to provide proper maintenance. ‘Teamwork of departments, villages or community, and beneficiaries concerned is required to achieve that,’ he added.

‘Everybody is affected by water scarcity in Kohima town and is looking for water everywhere — in streams, wells, buying etc.,’ he said while urging the department to commission the project during this dry season, though it was initially planned to do so after some months.

He informed that in the urban areas, water and power supply to consumers would now be privatised so that government, private, and consumers can benefit from it. Once privatised, if consumers do not pay their electricity or water bills, the connection would be cut off automatically, he said while requesting the consumers to co-operate and pay ‘for what they have used’.

The chief minister also said that departments concerned must pay some amount of shares to the source to maintenance of the projects more efficient.

In Nagaland, it is very difficult to implement any project due to landownership issue and slow working pace, he said, adding that the project took time to commission due to various technical challenges and sought co-operation from citizens for any developmental projects.

Sedimentation tank at Zarü River project at Mima
Sedimentation tank at Zarü River project at Mima (EM images)

Dzükou River water project in process

On augmentation of water supply from Dzükou River, Rio informed that the land issue is now resolved and government is in search of loan to start the project. He added that government is in the process of preparing a DPR for the project.

Minister of PHED, Jacob Zhimomi said the project would be a huge relief to Kohima citizens and assured that proper maintenance would be done. The project is a testament that the department has not failed the citizens of Kohima, he added even as he thanked the villagers for their co-operation and support.

Capacity: 3.80 million litres daily

Chief Engineer and Head of Department, Public Health Engineering, Repangyangba Longkumer, said the project is a pumping scheme, eventually reaching Kohima town by gravity system. The design capacity is 3.80 million litres daily if water is pumped for 18 hours per day.

The pumping is done in two stages- 520 HP each with the pumping capacity of 210 M3/hour, he informed. The combined pumping head is 939m, which is one the highest heads used for pumping water supply in Nagaland and even in the North East.

Pumping mains is dia. 250mm with a length of 14.9 km. The diameter of gravity mains is 250 and 150 mm with total length of 18 km. the design flow is 210M3/h.

With two pumping stages, pressure break tank (above Kigwema village) to reservoir at Aradhura Hill and to reservoir at Police Headquarters in Kohima; the total length comes to around 39.9 km.

The major components of the project included diversion weir, desilting tank, hydraulic mix chamber, clariflocculator, sedimentation tank, rapid sand filter, backwash, clean water sump, pumping stations, rising mains, gravity mains and distribution.

The department initially planned to augment water supply to Kohima town from Dzükou River to which, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs approved the project in 2004. When department began preparations and was already into the project, some problems came up among the source (water) owners and it could not be resolved.

After waiting for almost five years, the department was compelled to look for another source — Zarü River. So, a revised DPR was prepared and the Centre accepted the proposal. The revised project comes with additional cost to the previous project, so the state government accommodated the additional cost, it was informed.

Sorry for the delay

While apologising to the citizens of Kohima for the delay in implementing the project, Longkumer informed that it could not be commissioned on time due to various factors like monsoon-induced damages to intake works, diversion weir, approach road WTP, damage of main pipes due to road construction, power transformer, and difficulties in laying of distribution pipes due to lack of right of way.

He went on to inform that the project testing and trial runs started in January 2020 but was interrupted due to Covid-19 lockdown, leading to further delay.

He informed that the project is power supply-dependent, feasibility of power back up generation, which would mean high operations and management cost. Hence, the project may not the best option but had to make with what is available.

He also informed that the existing distribution is outdated and there is a need for complete overhaul.

6135
By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: Mar 27, 2021 1:27:00 am