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By:Mohan Lal Verma
Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Mr. Virbhadra Singh today inaugurated a weeklong International Shivratri Fair at Mandi. He led the Shivratri procession from DC office to Paddal ground after paying obeisance to the presiding deity of the area. The procession consisted hundreds of local deities decorated in palanquins accompanied by their traditional music instruments, many devotees and contingents of Himachal Police and Home Guards.
Before inaugurating the fair he laid foundation stone of drinking water supply scheme for Mandi town and its suburbs costing Rupees 82.19 crore. The town, which was fast expanding, now is facing acute shortage of drinking water facility and apart from this it was a long pending demand of the people of the area, which is nearly fulfilling.
The water will be lifted from Uhl rivulet, a tributary of river Beas, which would nearly solve the drinking water problem of the town till 2046 and benefit more than one lakh seventy eight thousand people. Not only this, the people will have water supply round once the scheme commences. He also laid down the foundation stone of a bridge near the old Victoria bridge in Mandi which is to be completed at a cost of Rupees 20 crore. Besides all this he also inaugurated 33/11KV electric sub-station at Samkhetar estimated at a cost of Rupees 3 crore and also woman police station at Bhiuli. This is the third woman police station of its kind in the state, the other two being at Shimla and Dharamsala.
The Chief Minister also inaugurated Rupees 2.14 crore zila parishad office and office of district panchayat officer at Bhuili. He also laid foundation stone of Dev Sadan at Kangni to be made at an estimate of Rupees 16.50 crore to facilitate the tourists who come in large numbers during the Shivratri fair and will have enough space to accommodate them besides providing them with other facilities.