Executive Engineer of the panchayat S.L. Sathyanarayana said here on Monday that 35 mini-drinking water supply projects completed by the engineering division of the Dakshina Kannada Zilla Panchayat during 2011-12 were awaiting electricity connections.

Stating this at the monthly meeting of the Karnataka Development Programme Review Committee, Mr. Sathyanarayana said that 18 mini-drinking water supply projects in the district were in various stages of completion. They also needed power connections. Hence, 53 mini-drinking water supply projects needed power supply, he said.

Mangalore Electricity Supply Company Ltd. wanted the panchayat to deposit the actual estimated cost of energising each project. But a recent circular issued by the Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Department prevented the panchayat from depositing the money. Hence, there was a problem in getting power connections, he said.

Mr. Sathyanarayana said that according to the earlier order of the government, the panchayat should deposit Rs. 1 lakh with Mescom for power connection to each mini-drinking water supply project. If it was a piped water supply project, the amount to be deposited would be Rs. 2 lakh for each project. But later the government issued a circular which enabled the panchayat to pay the actual cost to get power connection to each project. In a recent circular on April 2, 2012, the RDPR Department had asked the panchayat to stick to its earlier order. According to this circular, the panchayat could not pay the actual estimated cost to Mescom.

Mr. Sathyanarayana said that the actual estimated cost of energising 53 projects according to Mescom was Rs. 128.61 lakh. According to the earlier order of the government, the panchayat would have to pay only Rs. 53 lakh for energising them. The panchayat could pay the difference amount of Rs. 74.61 to Mescom. But the recent circular prevented it from doing so.

Replying to this, an official of the Mescom said that Mescom had not received the recent circular issued by the RDPR Department.

The Chief Executive Officer of the panchayat K.N. Vijay Prakash said that the panchayat would write to the RDPR Department over this issue. He directed the executive engineers and the zilla panchayat to find out a mutual solution to the problem.

President of the panchayat K.T. Shailaja Bhat presided over the meeting.

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