Budget Session 2021: Governor addresses the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly
Shillong, Mar 5: Meghalaya Governor Satya Pal Malik in his address to the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly on Day 1 of the Budget Session highlighted the various initiatives and interventions, programmes and achievements of the government.
He stated that the Government is particularly focused on enhancing the service delivery in health and education sectors and to making larger investments in physical infrastructure such as roads, bridges, power and drinking water supply.
“Another critical focus is on improving rural livelihoods and promoting enterprises through mission mode interventions in the sectors of Agriculture, Horticulture, Fisheries and Animal Husbandry,” he said.
On Law and Order situation in the state, Malik stated that there were few agitations by NGOs on issues concerning the implementation of Inner Line Permit and protests against CAA, however, it was dealt effectively by the state government.
“Sharing an international border of 444.8kms, the State is committed to complete the balance border fencing work expeditiously. The State Government remains committed to effectively contain illegal migration, trans-border movement and activities of militants and anti-national elements,” he said.
On Health and Family Welfare, the Governor stated that the state is fully prepared to undertake mass vaccination of its citizens despite certain challenges.
He stated that the State Government has managed to effectively contain the spread of COVID-19 and in raising awareness among the people and adopted a Unique Problem Driven Iterative Approach, a decentralized process that encouraged the participation of agents across multiple sectors to leverage embedded knowledge and come up with local solutions to local problems.
He added that the government through the Planning Department has availed financial resources from the North Eastern Council; Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region, Ministry of Tribal Affairs, and also leveraging funds from various agencies under the Externally Aided Projects.
Malik stated that the Department of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare continues to lay strong emphasis on food safety, nutrition, and livelihood security.
“The 1917 iTEAMS, during the COVID-19 lockdown, played a key role in providing IT enabled services to farmers. 2,488 metric tonnes of agriculture and horticulture produce valued at Rs 7.8 Crore was evacuated, and 2,743 numbers of farmers were linked to the markets,” he stated.
“More than 86,000 farmers are expected to benefit from the Kisan Credit Card crop loan with interest subvention of 2%. Additionally, 1,72, 598 farmer beneficiary households had been registered under the PM Kisan income support scheme,” he added.
On Education, the Governor stated that the Department is upgrading the infrastructure of Government schools from primary level upwards to the Higher Secondary level.
“200 Elementary and Eight Secondary and Higher Secondary schools have been identified for this purpose. Further, additional classrooms in 110 schools have been upgraded under funding from the Ministry of Tribal Affairs,” he said.
He added that the ‘Supporting Human Capital Development’ project has been successfully completed at all the 110 identified schools.
“Under the Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan, the professional colleges at Shillong and Tura are nearing completion,” he said.
The Governor informed that during 2019-2020, an amount of rupees 111.5 Crore sanctioned by the Government of India, for areas not covered under Part IV and IX (A) of the Constitution of India, was released to the three Autonomous District Councils, for various developmental programmes.
On Power in the state, Malik stated that the Department has undertaken various projects to improve reliable power availability all around the year.
“These include the renovation, modernization and up gradation of Umiam Stage 3 hydroelectric plant at a cost of rupees 408 Crore and projects being undertaken under the World Bank funded Dam Rehabilitation and Improvement Project,” he said.
On Tourism, he said that the Government is prioritizing tourism sector in the state and that the Government of India has sanctioned Rs. 85 Crore under the Swadesh Darshan scheme and another rupees 39 Crore under the PRASAD scheme for development of Tourism in the State.
On Sports & Youth Affairs, he added that the draft Meghalaya Youth Policy, 2021 has been put in the public domain for a wider consultation by the Sports & Youth Affairs Department.