JNV-Rohtak closed for 10 ten days, Dans Energy directed to undertake immediate protective works

DC-West convinced that company is being a public nuisance

Gangtok, 12 Aug:

The Rangit has been spate for the past week or so, and as the water in the 96 MW Jorethang Loop Hydroelectric Project reservoir rises, it has been lapping perilously close to the JawaharNavodayaVidyalaya at Rohtak which has its campus along the banks of the river. The situation had grown so dire that the DC-West today directed that the school be shut for ten days during which immediate protective works are to be undertaken by the project developer and the weather would also improve. Strict directions have been reiterated to the project developer as well.

While the toe erosion caused by the rise and ebb of the reservoir has been cleaving away at the campus boundary ever since the project was commissioned in October 2015, this season has been especially bad. Apart from having taken away a portion of the boundary wall, the erosion is now threatening one of the hostels in the school and has already led to the evacuation of the affected section.

The reservoir waters are barely three to four feet away from the said section of the hostel which has now been evacuated. The school authorities are at pains in trying to accommodate the 24 boys in the remaining dorms. And while that may have been an inconvenience they could weather through, the continuing threat of unchecked erosion being caused by the reservoir has everyone worried.

Yesterday, the area MLA had visited the affected school and assured that emergency measures will be undertaken, and although the reservoir level was reduced today, a long-term solution will have to be contemplated with proper rim treatment.

As for the immediate measures, DC-West, KapilMeena, while speaking to SummitTimes about the JNV, Rohtak, situation, informed that the company in question, Dans Energy Pvt Ltd, has been given “strict instructions to complete temporary accommodation construction within five days.”

This temporary arrangement, the DC has ordered, should be “proper and adequate and per the requirements of the JNV school to be decided in consultation with the Principal”.

The project developer, he informs, has also been directed to install floodlights by the riverside from where all residential areas are to be vacated.

The school, the DC informs, has been closed for 10 days starting today as a precautionary measure.

“Also, we have asked the company to immediately lower the reservoir water level to a safe limit,” the DC informed.

The DC, it is informed, has convened a meeting to address the situation at the school and issued formal orders.

“All precautionary measures to be taken by company and they have informed the water levels have been reduced today afternoon plus agreed to take up the works from tomorrow,” the DC informs.

In case of noncompliance we will take strict legal action against them, he has further warned.

Also, directions have been passed for “permanent solution of making proper reinforcement protection wall”. This has to be initiated within 15 days.

“Further, DANS Energy Pvt Ltd shall take all other necessary measures as demanded by the students to ensure that no further damage or loss to life and property of the school is caused due to the negligence of the company and will initiate immediate necessary action. In case of non-adherence to the deadline as well as the directions as given above, necessary legal action shall be taken as per the Disaster Management Act, 2005, section 188 of Indian Penal Code and other provisions of the IPC related to negligence on your part,” the DC-West’s Order passed to the Director, DANS Energy concludes.

The order also conveys that West District administration is convinced that the company, due to its negligence, has attracted provisions of public nuisance as defined in the IPC. “…continuance of this public nuisance needs to be prohibited as per powers conferred under section 143, 133 etc of Criminal Procedure Code,” the Order also details.