Governor Ganga Prasad addresses members of new House

SHILLONG, Mar 16: Meghalaya Governor, Ganga Prasad on Friday delivered his maiden address in the state Legislative Assembly.

This is also the first budget session of the National People’s Party (NPP)-led Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA).

Addressing the House, Prasad said that in the new term many new initiatives and programmes will be embarked and manifested in the coming years.

“The policies and programmes of my government will be highlighted and also of how it will be carried forward setting a new benchmark for development and prosperity,” the Governor said.

The Governor’s speech however, mostly listed the achievements of the previous Congress-led Meghalaya United Alliance – II government led by Dr Mukul Sangma.

On the issue of law and order, Prasad said that Meghalaya is by and large peaceful even as he lauded the security forces for doing their job despite facing constraints of difficult terrain and poor communication infrastructure.

The Governor also informed the House that on March 12, eight cadres of the GNLA surrendered.

“The government’s recent approach to facilitate surrendered cadres of different militant organisations to take advantage of the government rehabilitation package and assimilate in the national mainstream by involving the Church and community leaders with the aid of the district administration and police have yielded results,” Prasad said.

On the inter-state border dispute with Assam, the Governor said that the areas of differences are being monitored continuously even as he said that efforts are on to solve these differences.

Prasad also said that effective mechanisms at the level of the Chief Ministers and Chief Secretaries of both the states have been created for securing a permanent solution to the issue.

On the issue of influx from Bangladesh, Prasad said that Meghalaya is committed to complete the remaining fencing on the international border at a fast pace by taking the people into confidence to effectively contain influx of Bangladeshi nationals and trans-border movement and activities of militants and anti-social elements.

Prasad also informed the House that the state government is also in the process of implementing a new initiative of creating facilitation centers at various entry and exit points on the inert-state border with Assam to check the entry of illegal migrants and other suspicious persons in Meghalaya.

The Governor also said that special juvenile police units have been set up in all the district headquarters headed by the Superintendents of Police of the concerned districts.

Prasad also informed that to curb immoral trafficking Special Police Officers under the provisions of the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956 have been notified.

“The Special Superintendent of Police, CID has been notified as Nodal Officer on trafficking of women and children and all Superintendents of Police in the districts have been notified as Nodal Officers for the purpose in their respective districts,” the Governor said.

He also informed the House that anti-human trafficking unit has been set up in the districts of East Khasi Hills, Ri-Bhoi, West Jaintia Hills and West Garo Hills.

Prasad also said that the 181 Women Helpline is functional in the state, track the missing child portal has been implemented and one stop crisis centre has been set up at Ganesh Das Hospital, Shillong for victims of sexual assault.

The Governor also informed the House that the government has taken steps to strengthen the forensic science laboratory and funds have been sanctioned for the procurement of equipment required for the DNA Lab.