Nagpur, Feb 17: (IPR) The Dhara Vikas initiative of the Rural Management & Development Department, Government of Sikkim was widely appreciated at the ‘Bhujal Manthan’, a crucial two-day convention on ground water conservation, held at Kavivarya Suresh Bhat Auditorium of Nagpur. The Convention was inaugurated on Friday at the hands of Union Minister for Water Resources and Ganga Rejuvenation Shri Nitin Gadkari.

In his inaugural address, the Minister lauded the Dhara Vikas initiative of Sikkim as a model for other States to follow, and apprised the illustrious gathering that he had specially invited the state of Sikkim to showcase and explain its Dhara Vikas programme.

On behalf of the State of Sikkim, Additional Secretary cum PD MGNREGA, RMDD, Government of Sikkim, Mrs Sarika Pradhan shared the Dhara Vikas program of the State with the Convention today. Sikkim was also represented in the convention by Dr. Subhash Dhakal, OSD, RMDD.

While the officials and scientists of the different Water Resources Departments of the country got together to brainstorm on the increasingly scarce resource that ground water is becoming, the convention was also attended by three Union Ministers of State (MoS) and two Members of Parliament.

The two-day Convention came to a conclusion today.

Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sichayee Yojana

Dzongu, 15th Feb 2018(IPR): A field visit to Noom Panang village was done by the District Collector, North Shri Karma R Bonpo, IAS. The District Collector was accompanied by the Addl Director, AHLF&VS, MD North Sikkim Milk Union, BDO Dzongu, Dy Director Horticulture, DIO North, AE Roads & Bridges, AE Irrigation, AE Agriculture and various field staff.
Noom Panang is a remote village located in Passingdang Saffo GPU and the team had to trek for an hour to reach the village from Lingthem. A ward Sabha was organized and during the Sabha an interaction with the district officials was held.
The village of Noom Panang is currently one of few vegetable clusters in the district and is currently producing vegetables which are sent to Gangtok. The local people evinced keen interest to produce vegetables on a large scale as per the organic mission of the Government of Sikkim. However due to the shortage of water in the village the vegetable production was being hampered. The village does not have any road connectivity and the people stated that it lead to huge transportation costs which eats their profit margins. The people therefore demanded that road connectivity and water supply works be taken up on priority to give further fillip to the organic production. The people stated that in order to take up dairy farming a stockman centre at Passingdang was required.
The District Collector North stated that the water supply for irrigation will be taken up under Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sichayee Yojana (PMKSY) and the work will be taken up shortly by the Agriculture Department. The District Collector North directed the Assistant Engineer, Roads & Bridges to take up the preparation for DPR for road connectivity. Further the District Collector appealed to the villagers to revive the co-operative societies and set up milk collection centre. He said the villages should also focus on dairy farming for livelihood generation and to aid the organic mission in the villages. The district Collector promised that all help will be extended by the district administration for getting loans for dairy farming under Diary Entrepreneurship Development Scheme of NABARD. The District Collector also visited the ICDS Centers and the Primary school of the villages. He said the necessary repairs of these centers will be undertaken.
The Local Public heartily welcomed the team and were delighted to have the team in the villages. They further stated that they will readily work with the district administration in making the organic mission of the State Government a big success.


It is for information of all the Homestay operators/owners
( private and Government) that Tourism and
Civil Aviation Department, Government of Sikkim is organizing one day Training Programme in all the four district as per the Schedule given below.:
East District : 6 th march 2018 at Paryatan Bhawan, Gangtok.
North District : 8 th March 2018 at Zilla Panchayat Bhawa, Mangan.
South District : 10 th March 2018 at SICB Karfectar, Jorethang
West District : 12 th 2018 at Zilla Panchayat Bhawan, Gyalshing
Therefore, all the interested homestay operators/owners may submit their application to the Joint/Deputy Director of Tourism and Civil Aviation of concerned District on or before
24th February 2018 (during office hour )beyond which no applications shall be entertained.
The Department shall issue participation certificate to all on completion of said training. However, no TA/DA shall be paid for attending the training programme.
Deputy Secretary (Adm)
Tourism and Civil Aviation Department

ORDER No. SKM/GOV/2018/7055

A subsequent Order No. SKM/GOV/2018/7055 dated 13th February, 2018 from the Office of the Hon’ble Governor of Sikkim reads:
In exercise of the powers conferred on me by clause (1) of Article 174 of the Constitution of India, I, Shriniwas Patil, Governor of Sikkim, hereby summon the Sikkim Legislative Assembly to meet on 6th March, 2018 at 11:00 am in the Sikkim Legislative Assembly Secretariat, Gangtok.
I, further direct that the Secretary, Sikkim Legislative Assembly, shall notify the Members accordingly.
(Shriniwas Patil)
Governor of Sikkim

ORDERS No. SKM/GOV/2018/7054

Gangtok, Feb 13: (IPR) The following Order No. SKM/GOV/2018/7054 dated 10th February, 2018 of the Hon’ble Governor of Sikkim is hereby circulated for general information.
In exercise of the powers conferred on me by sub-clause (a) of clause (2) of Article 174 of the Constitution of India, I, Shriniwas Patil, Governor of Sikkim, hereby prorogue the Sikkim Legislative Assembly which was summoned to meet on 15th March, 2017.
(Shriniwas Patil)
Governor of Sikkim
The same was forwarded by Secretary, Legal, Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs Department, Government of Sikkim, vide Notification No. 02/LL&PAD/2018 dated 12/02/18.
A subsequent Order No. SKM/GOV/2018/7055 dated 13th February, 2018 from the Office of the Hon’ble Governor of Sikkim reads:
In exercise of the powers conferred on me by clause (1) of Article 174 of the Constitution of India, I, Shriniwas Patil, Governor of Sikkim, hereby summon the Sikkim Legislative Assembly to meet on 6th March, 2018 at 11:00 am in the Sikkim Legislative Assembly Secretariat, Gangtok.
I, further direct that the Secretary, Sikkim Legislative Assembly, shall notify the Members accordingly.
(Shriniwas Patil)
Governor of Sikkim

DC (South) Mr. Raj Yadav inspected District Hospital, Namch

Namchi, 10th Feburary(IPR): A team led by DC (South) Mr. Raj Yadav inspected District Hospital, Namchi today. The hospital has also been awarded the best hospital under Kayakalp Activity recently, the credit of which goes to the diligent efforts of officers, staff and community participation. The inspection was done in presence of CMO & DMS (South) and the team was informed that the entire carpeting works had not been completed but has been started by Mahaveer and Parsuram contractor. Similarly, Purushutam Agarwal would be requested to complete the maintenance of floor near the main entrance of the Hospital. The DC South also gave several instructions which are as under:

1. DMS has been directed to clean up all the sign boards. Further, new sign boards already installed by axis bank, but still some requirement of new sign boards are there, the private banks would be requested to install them through their CSR funds.

2. All old bulbs were to be replaced with LED bulbs. All power cables, lines were to be maintained within fifteen days.

3. DC has directed the DMS to get the pathway inside the Hospital painted at the earliest.

4. He inspected the toilets. Several direction regarding maintenance and cleanliness of toilets were given. The old worn out doors, leakage were to be maintained at the earliest. Several switch boards were left open posing threat to public, hence the same was to be maintained.

4. The DC has directed to install Exhaust Fans in all wards whereever necessary.

5. The Paediatric ward was well maintained. The DC has further urged the hospital ward staffs to complete the remaining painting work to make it look more beautiful.

6. All sign boards to be fixed on the wall properly.

7. Repairing & Painting of old chairs and benches was to be done at the earliest.

8. Installation of Digital Watches outside the wards will be done.

9. The Inverter in the Labour room was not functioning properly. The same would either be repaired or New one would be purchased by DC office.

10. A new inverter would be purchased for Blood Bank, Namchi to keep all necessary equipment functional by DC office.

The District Collector has thanked immensely who have lent their hands in supporting the Kayakalp initiatives of the Administration namely Taxi Driver Association(South), We Care Group, Drishti, Police, Sr Sec School(Namchi), Sailesh Pradhan, Axis Bank (Namchi), Anjuman Islamia Samaj, Shri Satya Sai Foundation,NYK and Dokham Hotel(Namchi). Due to their contribution we were able to make our hospital best and got awarded under Kayakalp.

The Special Handloom Expo 2017-2018

Gangtok, February 8 (IPR): Sikkim Handloom and Handicrafts Development Corporation organized the Special Handloom Expo 2017-2018 at Directorate of Handloom and Handicrafts, Zero point. The Advisor of Commerce and Industries, Smt. Kumari Thapa inaugurated the Special Handloom expo.
The expo was sponsored by Development Commissioner (Handloom), Ministry of Textiles, Government of India.

The chief guest Smt. Kumari Thapa visited the stalls of 7 different states including the host state and interacted with the participants and expressed her keen interest and happiness.

The Special Handloom Expo is a PAN India Programme and has 30 stalls where various Weavers and Self Help Groups from Sikkim, Assam, Manipur, Mizoram, Bihar, West Bengal and Jammu and Kashmir have participated in the expo with their attractive handloom products.

The Special Handloom Expo provided platform for Weavers, Self Help Groups, sellers and even buyers to converge and create awareness vis-a-vis the handloom sector as an employment and income generating industry.

The inaugural programme was also attended by SISCO Bank Manager, Gangtok, Smt Richen D Kaleon, Director of Directorate of Handloom and Handicrafts, Smt. Jyotsna Mary Karthak, Assistant Director of Directorate of Handloom and Handicrafts, Shri Tshering Dorjee Gyamtso and other officers and staffs of the department.

Forest Right Act 2005

Lachung, 8th February (IPR): A sensitization and an awareness program on Forest Right Act 2005 was held by the District Administration at Lachung Dzumsa. The meeting was chaired by District Collector North which was attended by the Sub Divisional Magistrate Mangan and Sub Divisional Magistrate Chungthang.

SDM Mangan provided a brief overview of the Forest Right Act and role and responsibilities of the Dzumsa with regard to implementation of the act. He stated that under the Act a Forest Rights Committee consisting of ten to fifteen members was required to be immediately constituted by the Dzumsa. Once constituted the applications of Forest Rights should be submitted to the Committee. The committee will verify the claims and objections and conduct joint verification with the Forest and Revenue officials. The final list will then be placed before the Dzumsa which will approve the claims received. The Sub Division Level Committee constituted at the sub-division will verify the claims submitted by the Dzumsa and forward the list to the District Level Committee for establishment of forest rights.

The District Collector stated that Forest Right Act was an important act as majority of the people settled in Lachung were traditional pastoral communities. Many claims were being received from the people but due to the lack of awareness, the act was not being implemented. He stated that it was therefore important to understand the provisions of the act and train the Forest Right Committee extensively. The roles and responsibilities of traditional forest dwellers under the Act should be clearly understood so that there is a balance between the rights of the Scheduled Tribes and conversation of Nature. He stated that future awareness meeting will be made if there is a demand from the people.

The District Collector while addressing the gathering also stated the need for sustainable tourism in the valley. He stated the over the years there has been a explosion in the tourist inflow and due to this it has led to mushrooming of unplanned concrete structures everywhere. There is thus an urgent requirement for proper town planning and regulation so that the traditional architecture and pristine beauty of the valley can be preserved for posterity. The youth of the valley should focus on generation of livelihood from tourism activities and the sub letting of hotel should be minimized. He appealed to the Dzumsa to regulate the construction activities and focus more towards high value tourism rather than commoditization of the tourism. He also stated the Border Area Development works should be focussed on revenue generation and livelihood creation for the youths.

The Awareness program was well received by the members of the Dzumsa who appealed to the District authorities to find a solution to their land rights.

Nitin Gadkari Appreciates Sikkim’s Dhara Vikas Initiative

New Delhi, Feb 7:(IPR) The Rural Management and Development Department (RMDD) was invited by the office of the Hon’ble Union Minister, Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation to present the Dhara Vikas Initiatives of the State. The Department was represented by Addl. Secretary cum PD – MGNREGA, Mrs Sarika Pradhan and Dr.Subhash Dhakal, OSD – RMDD. The meeting was chaired by Shri Nitin Gadkari, Hon’ble Minister for Water Resources and was attended by the Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, Chairman of Central Ground water Board, Regional Director, Central Ground Water Board, Secretary and Joint Secretary of Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation.

The Rural Management and Development Department (RMDD) is entrusted with the responsibility to provide drinking water supply in the rural areas of the state. It is a daunting task, as it requires work to be done in extremely challenging physical landscape of the mid-hills (900 m -3000 m) with scattered households on the fragile slopes. Glaciers and snow-fed rivers flow much below the habitations in the valleys with no scope for utilization. The provisioning for water is thus met by tapping water from small springs and streams. According to Sikkim First, an economic and political journal, about 65,000 (nearly 80%) of the state’s rural households depend on springs for drinking water and irrigation. Until the springs were perennial, the task was only to manage the distribution system. However, the ever growing demand for water due to population increase and rapid transformation in land use and land cover on the one hand and impact of climate change on the other hand has exerted immense pressure on the limited water resources. Most of the springs are drying up or becoming seasonal leading to acute water scarcity during the dry season especially from December to May.

According to Meteorological Department, rainfall, as a principal source of natural recharge for these aquifer systems in itself, is undergoing change wherein we are experiencing a reduction in a number of rainy days. Well-distributed rainfall in the form of a drizzle spread over a number of months is now received in the form of a heavy down pour in few months. Thus, the availability of water during the dry season and the rainy season varies drastically, resulting in too-little and too-much syndrome.

The outcome of the prevailing situation has directly affected the women and children living in the rural areas as they have to spend the best part of their time fetching water for household needs. This also has affected the agricultural practices and livestock management. The impact is apparently in their economic condition, health, and hygiene at the household level and in rural schools and other local institutions.

As a part of Climate Change adaptation and recognising the urgent need for ensuring water security, the Rural Management and Development Department (RM&DD), conceptualised the Dhara Vikas initiative to revive the state’s drying springs. The core thrust of Dhara Vikas is to catch the surface runoff water and use it to recharge groundwater. The initiative was funded from the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), with technical support from other government agencies and organisations like WWF – India; People’s Science Institute, Dehradun; ACWADAM, Pune Arghyam, Bangaluru and others. The programme has been evolving over the years basically in a “Learning by doing” mode as there were no models for spring revival available to replicate in the State. Success of the programme is also being measured by people’s perception and works are on to scientifically back this up with data and studies.

The Hon’ble Union Minister was impressed with the pioneering initiative of the State for its simplicity and effectiveness. He has asked his Ministry to see how this initiative can be upscaled to other Himalayan and North East states where the same is replicable. He has further requested that the State present this initiative in the Bhujal Manthan being organised by the Central Ground Water Board on 16-17th of February 2018. The main objective of the Bhujal Manthan is for brainstorming interactions applying collective wisdom amonst various researchers, stakeholders, water managers engaged in ground water resource management and policy planners to give attention to role of ground water in irrigation, water conservation & recharge and participatory ground water management and sustainability.