Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur while interacting with the media persons informally here today said that the state government was committed to find permanent solution for water crisis in Shimla town. He said that long term project was being formulated that would cater to the drinking water needs of the people of the town for five to six decades.He said that he recently met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi and submitted him a proposal for drinking water project for Shimla and it was on his request that the Prime Minister sent a team of Central Water Commission to the state. Besides, he also demanded Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri to sanction Rs. 200 crore for water supply project for Shimla.The Chief Minister said the government had set a target to supply extra 10 MLD water to Shimla from Chaba within a year on which around Rs. 80 crore would be spent.He said a water harvesting project amounting to Rs. 4700 crore had also been sent for approval of the Government of India for Shimla town under which work would be done for augmentation of water resources to maintain the ground water level. He said the state government would also work on few water resources from the state fund. Moreover, the state government would also explore the possibilities to expedite work on lifting water to Shimla from Kol dam.
Jai Ram Thakur said that the residents of Shimla town had to suffer for few days due to shortage of drinking water due to less rainfall and snow during this winter. However, the state government handled the situation promptly and various arrangements were made to restore normal water supply on priority. He said that Shimla had been facing this situation in the months of May and June for last many years but the previous government made no efforts to find some solution for this problem.He said it was unfortunate that few people tried to politicize this issue but they should remember that during the regime of Congress government, Shimla faced water crisis even when more than 34 MLD water was available. He added that this year the crisis came up as less than 22 MLD water was available, but it was for the first time that such serious efforts were made to restore the normal water supply in a very short period of time.Replying to a query, the Chief Minister said that the government had taken a decision to order an inquiry in to the excise revenue loss to the tune of Rs. 160 crore to the state.