Chandigarh, December 5, 2023 (Yes Punjab News)
During the maiden meetings with officials of the water resources and mining & geology departments, Punjab Cabinet Minister S. Chetan Singh Jauramajra today directed to enhance the monitoring system, preserve properties from illegal occupation and prevent excessive depletion of groundwater.
While chairing the meetings in the committee room of Markfed Bhawan, S. Chetan Singh Jauramajra emphasized the need for increased transparency in development projects. He reiterated a zero-tolerance policy towards lackadaisical attitude and substandard quality in work and equipment purchases.
During the meeting with officials of the water resources department, the cabinet minister emphasized the need for increased transparency and efficiency in their work. He urged officials to actively address illegal possessions on departmental properties, aiming to boost department revenue. The minister directed the officials to submit a detailed report on departmental properties within a month, saying that no person who encroached on the government properties will be spared.
The Water Resources Minister instructed officials to eliminate illegal encroachments on water courses, directing to prepare a proposal to reclaim these lands during the vacant periods in the rabi season.
The Cabinet Minister strongly emphasized the need to address requests regarding the halting of water in rivulets and other water courses and the installation of siphons at necessary locations.
S. Jauramajra directed to furnish the list of pending cases within a week and stressed for timely resolution, asking that reasons for delay in case to be included in the report. He also instructed to carry out development works in a timely manner in future.
Highlighting the importance of an efficient monitoring system within the department, the Water Resources Minister asked for the strengthening the monitoring cell to further enhance the department’s performance, ensuring quality and transparency.
The Cabinet Minister said that officials should ensure maximum use of canal water to prevent excessive depletion of groundwater. He stressed the need to extend canal water access to every farm and area to reduce reliance on tubewells for irrigation in Punjab.
The Minister instructed officials to actively engage in fieldwork and ensure seamless support for farmers. He said that no farmer should face any problem while getting the work done by the Water Resources Department besides ensuring the full use of the outlet of canal water for the farmers.
During the meeting, Secretary Mr. Krishan Kumar provided an overview of the department’s structure and operations, assuring full commitment to translating the Minister’s directives into tangible actions.
Calls for increased mineral extraction to supply affordable sand and gravel and combat illegal mining
During a separate meeting with officials of the Mining and Geology department, S. Chetan Singh Jauramajra emphasized that in line with Chief Minister S. Bhagwant Singh Mann’s vision, there is a need to strategize and increase mineral extraction to ensure the availability of sand and gravel at affordable rates for the state’s residents while addressing the issue of illegal mining.
The cabinet minister underscored the need for enhancing material extraction by initiating operations at all mining sites and including more possible sites in DSRs (District Survey Reports), adding that this step would increase the availability of sand in the market. While this will help in reducing the market prices, it will also curb illegal mining.
Emphasizing efficiency in public service, the Minister issued instructions to all District Mining Officers, directing them to promptly address public issues without any delays. He reminded all DMOs of the paramount importance of conducting their duties with utmost honesty and integrity, and made it unequivocally clear that any office found engaging in illegal activities will face severe consequences, reinforcing the government’s commitment to maintaining transparency and ethical practices within the mining sector.
During the meeting Sh. Abhijeet Kaplish, Director of Mines & Geology and S. Hardeep Singh Mendiratta, Chief Engineer (Mining) provided a comprehensive overview of the department’s activities and operations. Superintending Engineers and all District Mining Officers (DMOs) were also present in the meeting.