Basic amenities at Phungyar Sub Division villages still in deplorable conditions

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IMPHAL, 12 April: `Save animals campaigns are conducted at Imphal` ridiculed A Sangneiram of Sorde Village under Phungyar Sub Division of Ukhrul District. He said such campaigns together with others like `save forest`™, `save animal`™ should be carried out in the villages located adjacent to jungles.

He also said that villagers living in the remote areas are solely dependent of jhum cultivation as basic amenities are not sufficiently available for survival. He said that PDS and TD supplies do not reach the beneficiaries. He also charged that benefits of the government programmes for remote areas are distributed at the state Capital.

A media team led by Information Centres for Hill Areas Manipur (ICHAM) visited villages under Phungyar Sub Division of Ukhrul District on April 10 and 11, on the occasion of the first observation of the 28th foundation day of Kham-Lungpha Fraternal Organisation (KLFO) at Khambi village.

President ICHAM N Rajendro (Boi) as guest of honour of the foundation day function said that government facilities reserved for the villagers living in the remote area of the state are handled questionably. He said that to bridge the gulf between villagers from remote areas and the government is the motto of the ICHAM. He further elaborated that members of ICHAM will always work for the welfare of the people living in the hill areas of the state.

The foundation day function was also attended by KLFO president, A Amo Samuel, chairman Lungpha Long A Masanang, ICHAM general secretary SP Ngachonmi Ramshang as Chief Guest, president and guest of honour.

After the function ICHAM toured remote villages of the area to witness the ground reality of life in the villages. The last village to be located was Nongman Village, about 15 Km from Phungyar Sub Division and about 34 Km from Sangshak. A small population of about 500 villagers lived there.

The approach road to the village was a tough drive as its condition was deplorable. On the way to the village, the team witnessed the construction of new HT electric line.

During the sharing with the villagers, it was learnt that the labour for the new HT line construction was provided by the villagers of Nongman and surrounding villages. They were supervised by a staff of state electricity department but the villagers are not paid for their labour yet.

Demand for proper medical facility, PDS items, TD facilities, school staffs were the common voices of the villagers of Nongman, Kumram, Patbung, Sorde villages.

Same voices can be heard echoing from other surrounding villages said ICHAM president Boi. He said that majority of the government supplies and facilities meant for the villagers living at the remote areas of the state are mis-utilised and do not reach the end beneficiaries. PDS items like kerosene, Atta, Sugar or TD supplies of GI Sheets, weaving machines and pump sets are a far cry in the area, asserted Boi.

It may be mentioned that education department identifying defaulting teachers in the hill areas to be penalised. This had been stated by education minister M Okendro Singh himself during a press conference held at SSA Office located at Babupara. It is high time for the department to check teaching staffs posted in the hill areas of Phungyar Sub Division. It was noticed that the maximum of the teaching staffs have been informally substituted or else are perennially absent. The school buildings are also constructed with substandard materials, a village member of the School Management Development Committee (SMDC) told the visiting media team.

Elders of the villages are keen for science and mathematics subjects to be more extensively taught to the younger generations of the village, the headmaster of a school said. He further maintained that in the absence of allotted teachers, they recruit substitute teachers from the village itself and some from Imphal. He said that two of the substitute teachers of maths and science from Imphal have contributed all their heart and soul in teaching both the subjects at Sorde Village.

PDS items of rice is the only item that is available to the villagers, but their prices are sky rocketing, as the media team found out. A rice bag of 50Kg is available at the cost of Rs. 1050 at Nongman Village said a villager and when asked about other items like kerosene and sugar, he replied that those items are not at all available.

Medical facility was another issue of concern as the Primary Health Sub Centres, PHSC, do not function in the area or have not yet been inaugurated. The only PHC located at Phungyar Sub Division was also in deplorable condition.

Chairman Phungyar town People Organisation, Victor Mangsang said that the PHC is in bad state. He said that the only PHC has no water supply and no electricity. It is also totally devoid of telecommunication facility. He added that without water and electricity in a medical institute, the medical staffs are handicapped.

He maintained that the staff quarter is also in deplorable condition and they are living in rented rooms. He further said that the PHC is run by only two doctors and two nurses. The OPD also is open only from 10 to 12 am, he complained. The worse part of the medical facility of the Phungyar Sub Division is that the centre cannot conduct a delivery case which is one big factor to concern of, he asserted.

Rajendro later urged the state Government and concern authority to make all possible effort to supply basic amenities to the people living in the remote areas of the state. He said that education system in the remote areas are in need of strict scrutiny. He further said that integrity do not come with words but actions. He said that the failed Public Distribution System and Tribal Development facilities need to be spruced up so they are made to reach out to the people of the remotest areas of the state.

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