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PHED to review water tax
Correspondent KOHIMA, JUL 30 (NPN):
Published on 31 Jul. 2010 12:12 AM IST
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State department of public health engineering (PHE) is actively considering of reviewing recently hiked water tax very soon for which the department officials would meet soon, PHE minister Dr. K. Ngangshi Ao said Friday.
The department would soon meet to review the water tax which was hiked by more than 200% recently, Dr Ngangshi told media persons on the sidelines of the farewell programme for outgoing PHE chief engineer Er. Khetovi Sumi held at State Academy Hall here today.
He also admitted that there was miscommunication while deciding the hike on the water tax in the state and that he himself was not in favour.
The minister revealed that department was presently having around 15,000 customers but generating a revenue around Rs. one crore annually.
“We will try to and we’ll try to increase the number of consumer generating he said and added that the department had assured the state chief minister to enhance the revenue collection by 70%,” Ngangshi said.
On pointing out the poor services provided to consumers, particularly during the damage of pipelines which often take long time for repair, the minister said that it had three front enemies including nature, such as mud slide or landslide and man made such as damage of pipelines during developmental work or intentional damage by people particularly during election time.
He blamed the lack of sincerity and commitment to the job by the department staffs and also the lack of cooperation from the consumers.
It may be mentioned that opposition had rapped the PHE department for the quantum hike on water tax from Rs. 15 to Rs. 50 per 1000 litre and termed it as “illogical” during the recently concluded budget session. The opposition also pointed out that only three district had been declared fully implemented with metering system of water supply, two other district including Kohima and Dimapur has been partially implemented with the system.
Earlier, the minister in his address, said department has launched a new programme for water monitoring and water testing laboratory in all the eleven districts of the state during the current financial year.
Stressing on the importance of water, which is the very essence of life, he asked the department staffs to appreciate their own department first.
“Water is so important to life, yet it also carries so many diseases and challenged the department to seriously appreciate the department and try to provide portable water to everyone,” the minister said.
Meanwhile, the minister observed that outgoing chief engineer was a hard worker and very meticulous in record keeping and asked the department should emulate him.
State PHED secretary Zhaleo Rio, who also spoke on the occasion, termed the outgoing chief engineer Er. K Khetovi as a man of few words and an experience person who was an asset to the department.
Outgoing chief engineer Er. Khetovi Sumi, in his address, said there was no short cut as a professional and that one has to do their duty.
“We should all know our duty and responsibility,” he said, adding all the achievement made by the department during his term was through collective effort.
Earlier, representative of All Nagaland PHED field staff association registrar Toshili Sumi, on behalf of the ministerial staffs, Mendangsangba, Sr, Accountant on behalf of Account Wing, Er.Y Tep, SE PHED President APHE who also spoke on the occasion profusely lauded the outgoing chief Engineer. Message from the federation of Nagaland engineering service association was also read out. Er. Kevisekho Kruse, CCDU executive director proposed the vote of thanks.
Meanwhile, additional chief engineer Er. Mhondamo Ovung has taken over the charge as new chief engineer PHED, following the retirement of Er. K Khetovi Sumi, on completion of 35 years of length of service.
A simple handing and taking over charge ceremony was held soon after the function at chief engineer’s office chamber.

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