TODAY -
MANIREDA project spawns
Source: The Sangai Express

Hongbei Village (Kasom Khullen), July 11 2009: "To get electric light in the house for the first time in life is just like restoring the sight of a blind person," said 52-year old Thingmila Keishing of Hongbei village when she saw her house being lit with the power generated by a Wind-Solar Hybrid Power Project which was commissioned in the village today under the grace of Manipur Renewable Energy Development Agency (MANIREDA).

The 10-megawatt power project which can utilise both wind and solar energy has been installed by MANIREDA in collaboration with the Village Energy Committee of Hongbei at an estimated cost of Rs 54 lakh.

The project has been funded jointly by Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, North Eastern Council and Government of Manipur.

Situated at an altitude of 1400 metres above sea level, Hongbei village in Kasom Khullen sub-division of Ukhrul district, is a tiny village of Tangkhul community comprising just 23 households with a population of 85 people.

Electricity connection has been beyond the reach of the common people of the village till the inauguration of the hybrid power project during a function attended by Commissioner (Science & Technology, Information Technology and Works) Ram Muivah as chief guest today.

Expressing happiness over the new development in her village, Thingmila Keishing said the problem of light for the students to study at night would be solved from now onward.

'When there is no candle or Kerosene in the house, the children normally go to bed early after their evening meal', she informed, adding that villagers received only 3 litre of Kerosene provided by the Government after every month and one litre of Kerosene cost Rs 23 .

On buying the candles, a family has to spend atleast Rs 300 every month, Thingmila said.

Chairman of the Village Energy Committee K Khaphung conveyed that though the Power Department provided electricity connection upto his house two years back, the rest of the houses in the village have been denied power connection.

In construction of the project that has ensured power supply of 3 bulbs to each households, the villagers have contributed the required land, labour and other construction materials, he said, adding that in return for power consumption, each houses have to pay Rs 90 every month as taxes.

Speaking as chief guest of the inaugural function, Ram Muivah exhorted the villagers think of innovative ideas for tapping the potential of human resources and develop the entrepreneurial skills instead of waiting for the Government to provide grant/scheme.

Director of MANIREDA L Manglem who presided over the function observed that the power project being inaugurated today is the property of the villagers and should be utilised and maintained properly.

He also informed the gathering that eight more similar projects would also be taken up by MANIREDA in different parts of the State.


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