GUWAHATI: Newly-elected MLA of Jirang Sosthenes Sohtun has pledged to speed up the process of rural electrification in his constituency.
Several villages in western Ri Bhoi are yet to be electrified while the state of power availability is poor in many others.
For instance, Pyngker ‘C’ has been without power supply for more than a year now after a transformer developed technical glitch. MeECL allegedly has made no efforts to restore power in the village.
Speaking to The Shillong Times, Sohtun, who was sworn in as MLA on Wednesday, said he would take up the problems of the affected villages with the department concerned.
“During my campaign at Pyngker C, the villagers had complained about the problem. Not just this, several villages are without power, particularly in western Ri Bhoi. The worst affected are school students who are preparing for examinations,” the legislator said.
Sohtun, however, hoped that the Centre would take up the rural electrification scheme (Deendayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojna) in the right earnest in the state.
Asked about the number of villages in Jirang which are without powers, he said, “I cannot give you the exact figure but I will enquire and try to speed up the work of electrification in the affected hamlets. I will take it up with the state government.”
The MLA said he was committed to upgrading Patharkhmah administrative unit to a civil subdivision.
“I have always committed that I would strengthen the administrative unit. But now we have to let the government settle first. Let the notifications be issued and let us know the minister concerned so that the process can be taken up,” Sohtun, who won in Jirang as an NPP candidate, said. Upgrade of Patharkhmah to a civil subdivision has been a long-pending demand for the villagers of Jirang.
“It has been a 15-year-long demand. Besides, we need better roads, schools and healthcare facilities,” Comingstar Kharbani, a resident of Patharkhmah, told this correspondent.