Government of Meghalaya

Budget Speech

1996 97

By

Dr. R. C. Laloo

Finance Minister, Meghalaya

27th March, 1996

 

Mr. Speaker Sir,

It is my honour and privilege to present before this august House the budget estimates for 1996-97.

NATIONAL ECONOMY :-  There has been a remarkable revival of the Indian economy in a short  period of four years. The crisis of 1991 has been entirely overcome. The process of economic  restructuring and reforms has succeeded in moving  the economy to a higher growth path characterised by expansion of productive employment, a reduction of poverty, recovery in industrial output and foodgrains production, a substantial breakthrough in exports and a  marked  fall in rate of inflation. Over all  economic growth accelerated to attain a high growth of 6.3%  and projected to record a similar growth of 6.2%  in 1995-96 surpassing the average growth of first 4 years of the 8th Plan at 5.7%  which is a little higher than the 8th Plan target of 5.6%. Dr. Manmohan Singh, Union Finance Minister was right in stating that the post-crisis achievement of India is "remarkable" by international standards and the growth momentum appears to be sustainable.

        2. The domestic savings rate has reached a high of 24.4% of the GDP, the growth of real wages has averaged at 5.1% per annum. The incidence of poverty had declined to 19% of the population and employment growth is estimated to have averaged at 6.3 Million jobs per year over 1992-93 to 1994-95 against the annual rate of 4.8 Million jobs in the1980's Industrial growth has further increased  from 8.6% in 1994-95 to 12% in the April-September period of the current year and likely to be at this level in 1995-96. Capital goods sector  accelerated at 25% in 1994, power generation at 8.5% and manufacturing at 9%. Food grains output  attained a record level of 191 Million MT in 1994  and may be 190 Million MT in 1995-96 which reflects the effectiveness of the system of various incentives given to the farmers. The food security system has been stabilized further with the public food stocks at the level of 24.6 Million MT at the beginning of 1996 as against 14.7 Million MT about 4 years ago.

        The overall performance of the infrastructure sector was satisfactory with output of Coal, Steel and crude oil production registering growth at 6%, 9.3%  and 10%  respectively. Liberalisation of external trade and the new export strategy have yielded good results. In 1995-96, the export boom continued with 24% growth in the first 9 months  following a 18.4% growth in 1994-95. In tandem with industrial recover, imports  grew at a higher rate of 29.2% in April-December 1995  as against 22.9%  in 1994-95  resulting in widening of Trade deficit. However, there has been a significant increase  in Foreign Direct investment in 1995-96 over 1994-95  level of US $ 1.31 Billion. Though partly offset by favourable changes in the external currency rates, foreign debt continues to be very high though as a percentage of GDP  it has declined from 41% in 1990-91 to 33% in 1994-95 and therefore calls for prudent management

        A major achievement has been the decline in the rate of inflation which is ruling at 4-5% in January-February, 1996 due to overall growth in output and reduction  in expansion of money supply in the economy. Nevertheless, continuing rise in the prices of essential goods of mass consumption such as food grains, edible oil are matters of concern which underscore the need for a broad based public distribution system.

        While  presenting the Union Budget for 1996-97, the Union Finance Minister stated that the national objective is to accelerate growth with increased economic stability and to achieve this, the major tasks before the Nation are to complete reforms in areas of taxation, trade and industrial policies, financial sector so as to raise the efficiency and competitiveness of the economy, to raise public saving's to contain inflation on priority  basis, to correct the slippage in fiscal deficit, to remove constraints  on further expansion of agricultural and industrial output, to strengthen the anti-poverty programmes, to modernise the delivery systems of social services and to provide adequate and reliable levels of economic infrastructure services at reasonable cost.

STATE ECONOMY :- The year 1994-95 was a difficult year for the state economy. The flood in Garo Hills District  and uneven distribution of rainfall caused decline in agricultural output. Food grains production  remained at a low level of 1.43 lakh MT against the target of 2.03 lakh metric tons and rice output at 1.11 lakh MT, as against 1.18  lakhs MT in 1993-94. The production of potato, major  cash crop, also suffered and stagnated at 1.21. lakh metric tons. However, area and production of cotton and horticultural crops in 1994-95 show a better trend as the area and production of Pineapple and Citrus fruits have increased. Since the economy is predominantly agricultural, contributing about 32% to SDP intensification of agricultural development schemes is needed to raise the output and farm incomes which will be a major objective of the Annual Plan 1996-97. 

        In the field of industries, there has been some progress particularly in the small scale sector in terms of increase in number of units  from 1231 in 1988-89 to 2294  in 1994-95, investment in plant and machinery from Rs. 608.66 lakh to Rs.1513.80 lakhs and employment from 7458 to 13483 persons in 1994-95. There has been a significant increase in the output of coal, limestone and sillimanite in the last two years.

        The Provisional Net State Domestic Product at constant prices was estimated at Rs. 345.66 crores in the year 1993-94 where as the Quick Estimates for 1994-95 was Rs. 360.48 crores  which indicate a growth of 4.29% over the year as against 14.23% of the previous year. The Net  SDP at current prices for the year 1994-95 is estimated at Rs. 1205.68 crores as against Rs. 1054.10 crores in 1993-94 registering a growth of  14.38 compared to 8.91% in the preceding year.

        The Per Capita Income at Constant  Prices (1980-81) was Rs. 1810 in 1993-94 where as in 1994-95, it was Rs.1835 (QE) showing a rise only 1.38% compared to 11.04% of the preceding year. The Per Capita Income at current prices works out at Rs. 6136 (QE) in 1994-95 as against Rs.5519 in 1993-94 registering a growth of 11.18% as against 5.83% registering a growth of 11.18% as against 5.83% of the year earlier.

        Unemployment problem had been causing great concern to the State Government. According to the Live Registers of the Employment Exchanges of the State, the number of applicants seeking  employment as on 31st December, 1993,1994 and 1995 were 27604, 27282 and 27584 respectively. As per available statistics on educated unemployed, the number of Engineering Graduates recorded a gradual decrease from 106 in 1994 to 92 in 1995.

        The total number of job seekers attaining Matriculation standard and Pre-University/higher Secondary rose from 11,529 to 13054 in 1995.

        A continuing feature of the State economy is the high cost of machinery, raw materials and services which means higher investment requirement for every development  activity. Hence the imperative need of achieving efficiency in resource use. The Consumer Price Index of Shillong centre in June 1995 recorded a very high index of 262 compared to the other selected centres of the country. Prices continued to show an upward trend during the year 1995 with the  increase of both wholesale and retail prices of essential commodities. As the supplies of essential commodities in the State are mostly from outside, an increasing trend of prices is evident which may continue in 1996-97.

PLANNING :- Eighth Plan outlay of Meghalaya (1992-97) is Rs. 1029 crores. In the third year of the Plan (1994-95) the original outlay was fixed at Rs. 281.00 crores which was subsequently revised to Rs. 210.00  crores.  Actual utilisation during 94-95  was Rs. 181.60 crores. The State could not avail of large components of loans and External Aided funds provided in the Plan. The approved outlay of Meghalaya Annual Plan for 95-96 has been fixed at Rs. 306.52 crores.  The Annual Plan 95-96 is oriented towards strengthening of rural economy by  giving high priority on agriculture and other rural development programmes. In Roads and Bridges sector adequate attention is given on the on going construction of important works like Jowai-Amlarem-Dawki Road Dalu-Baghmara road etc.

        In view of the forthcoming general elections to the Parliament (as also the Assembly elections in some states/Union Territory), the Planning Commission  has decided to postpone the Plan discussion for 1996-97.  The state government was, therefore, advised to proceed with the preparation of Plan Budget for the year 1996-97 on the basis of Central assistance as fixed for the Annual Plan (95-96). Accordingly, the plan size for 96-97 has fixed at  Rs. 306.52 crores. The State government is also submitting the proposal of Rs. 71.72 crores for Centrally Sponsored Scheme for the year 1996-97. This is only the Central share which falls outside the agreed State Plan. In addition to the state Plan outlay for 95-96, a  tentative amount of Rs. 1062.00 lakhs has been allotted to the state out of the fund under the North Eastern Council  Plan as against the revised outlay of Rs. 962.41 crores during 94-95.

PROGRAMME IMPLEMENTATION :- The role of the department is to monitor, and review the implementation of Plan schemes and projects of various departments including 20- point Programme. Public Enterprise Cell under this department has been performing as a nodal agency for all State Public Enterprises to bring about uniformity in their appointment policy, timely preparation of accounts, and streamlining of this functions.

AGRICULTURE :- The economy of Meghalaya is basically rural and agrarian. However, The progress of agriculture continues to be slow due to the practice of shifting cultivation, and low level of adoption of improved technology. The proposed annual plan outlay is 1171.00 lakhs during 1996-97.

        The priority sector in Agriculture are Food grains and horticulture. The Food grains  production in 1993-94 was 1,49,334 tonnes, lower than the target, due to flash flood, lack of use of modern inputs and significant transfer of ownership of land into the hands on non-agriculturists. The target  for food production for 1996-97 is proposed at 2.16 lakh tonnes against the target of 2.07 lakhs tonnes during 95-96. To achieve this, the main strategies will be  to provide irrigation facilities for expanding the area under multiple cropping, increased use of fertiliser in existing fields, high yielding varieties and plant protection measure. The target of potato production proposed is 1.76 lakh tonnes. Under  Horticulture, various measures including popularisation of 'Poly' houses to promote growth of vegetables and flowers are expected to boost  the production to 2.63 lakhs tonnes by the end of 1995-96 from the level of 2.08 lakhs tonnes in 93-94. A target of total horticultural crops production of 3.29 lakh tonne is fixed during 1996-97. Recognising the imperative and need to set up appropriate institutional arrangements for developing the vast potential of horticultural and commercial crops, the Government have decided to set up a Commercial Crops Development Board and a separate Directorate of Horticulture for which provision have been made in the agricultural provision have been made in the agricultural sector Plan of 96-97. Construction of buildings  for establishments of two more District Research Stations and Laboratories, one at Nongstoin and other at Williamnagar has been completed and will start functioning soon. The National Watershed Development Projects for rainfed Areas (NWDPRA) is being implemented in 8(eight) Micro-Water-sheds under a Central Sector Scheme with an area  coverage of 4000 hectares. Establishment of an "AGMARK" laboratory is going to be completed this year.

ANIMAL HUSBANDRY AND VETERINARY :- Animal Husbandry is one of the important sub-sectors of agricultural economy and plays a significant role in the rural economy in providing  gainful employment particularly to the small/marginal farmers, women and agricultural landless labourers. Incentives in the form of subsidy and technical advice are provided to the people to take up poultry, piggery and dairying. During1995-96, the scheme for providing subsidy under Poultry, Piggery  and Dairying schemes to the rural people and educated unemployed youths was continued. A total number of 278 beneficiaries and 208 educated unemployed youths is covered under this scheme. The Plan outlay for 1996-97 is the same as 1995-96. The thrust areas are upgradation  of Veterinary health cover, strengthening of existing Cattle, Poultry and Pig Breeding farms and Feed Mills.

FISHERIES :- Inland Fisheries are mostly practiced in this state and the main thrust is given to production of fish and fish seed both in Department pond and in private sector. During 1994-95, 4074 MT of fish was produced against a target of 4050 MT  and a target  of 4350 MT has been fixed  during 1995-96. With a view to augment fish production in private sector, incentives are being provided to private pisciculturist to develop pond culture  under individual  and co-operative sector. The Kyrdem Kulai and Nongmahir reservoirs have been taken over by the department for fish culture to increase the production. Besides the existing scheme, new schemes like Fish-Cum-Piggery-Cum -Duckery and Poultry farming, construction of Mini Barrage have been taken up. Under the Mini Barrage Scheme 79 Fishery Projects have been taken up during 1994-95 in the State. 210 fish farmers  will be imparted training in modern techniques of fish culture during 1995-96. The fish farmers  Development Agency set up during 1994-95 have implemented a number of schemes. In 1994-95, 74 hectares of water area have been covered under this scheme. The target of covered areas has been fixed at 94 hectares during 95-96.

        An amount of Rs. 135.00 lakhs is the annual plan outlay proposed during 1996-97 for the  development of fisheries in the state.

CO-OPERATION :- The Co-operative  movement is a people's movement and its success depends on conscious participation of the people in it. The role of the co-operation Department is therefore that  of a catalyst. A total number of 32 new cooperatives was registered in the last year. A Memorandum of Understanding was reached between Meghalaya Co-operative Apex Bank, NABARD and the State Government  last year for implementation of an action plan which will bring about  desired  improvement in the functioning of primary credit structure and increased credit flow to farmers. Garo Hills Cooperative Cotton Ginning and oil  Mills Ltd. already procured about 4000 qtls of cotton in collaboration with Cotton Corporation of India. Consumer Co-operatives continues to maintain the growth rate. Co-operatives in other activities like handloom weaving Transport, Piggery, Dairy etc have made considerable progress.

FOREST AND ENVIRONMENT :- The Scenario of Environment and Forests continues  to cause concern. Destruction  and degration of forests are taking a heavy toll of our soil and water resources. In recent years massive campaigns have been launched  for conservation and protection of forests and natural resources through Doordarshan, AIR  and local press. The public participation and involvement of NGOs in prevention and control of pollution and environmental degradation will be  facilitated by providing necessary technical help.    

        The action Plan for the Department include provision of an Intensive Tree cover for protecting, regenerating and restoring the degraded land through the social forestry wing. An area of 4000 hectares is likely to come under this activity during 96-97. Development of Infrastructure for the protection of forests from biotic interference to preserve and protect natural forest wealth will be taken up.

        Besides these activities schemes on parallel speeding up of coordinated Air and Water pollution control, Eco-Development in Forest areas, Improvement of existing National Parks Sanctuaries are on the anvil.

SOIL CONSERVATION :- The primary task of the department is to protect all natural ecosystem by a comprehensive strategy of protection appropriate for different ecological and Geographical regions, of soil, water and  vegetation. To achieve this daunting task, the Department has put maximum stress on Afforestation, Prevention of Soil Erosion, Water Conservation and distribution works, cash crop Development and Control of Jhum cultivation. The Jhum control scheme is based on alternative and viable technology for the farmers to switch over to settle forms of cultivation for which Rs. 179.50 lakhs is proposed in 96-97 as against current year's allocation of Rs. 173.15  lakhs. Out of the total 8th Plan  out lay of Rs. 2440, a provision of Rs. 720.00 lakhs has been earmarked for the year 1996-97 under soil conservation.

COMMUNITY AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT :- Alleviation of rural poverty has been one of the primary objectives of planned development in a state and country as a whole. Ever  since the inception of planning, the policies and programmes have been designed and redesigned with this aim. The problem of rural poverty was brought into a sharper  focus during the last plan period. The strategy adopted by the department to achieve the above goals is through the state sector, Centrally sponsored and Central Sector Schemes. An outlay of Rs. 500.00 lakhs has been approved as annual plan outlay for 95-96 and Rs. 900.00 lakhs for 96-97. Apart from the state Sector Schemes, the department is implementing IRDP, JRY, EAS  and MP Local Areas Development Schemes.

        IRDP is implemented through the DRDA  having an annual outlay of Rs. 300.00  lakhs during 1995-96 while the Jawahar Rozgar Yojana (JRY)  is having a provision of Rs. 200.00 lakhs during 1996-97. Under this  programme, 30 percent of the employment benefits is reserved for women. Employment Assurance Scheme (EAS) is taken up in the state with a primary objective of providing  additional gainful employment to the rural poor irrespective of men and women during the lean agricultural seasons for which Rs. 200.00 lakhs have been proposed during 1996-97.

        Among other programmes, special scheme for assistance to Small Farmers, Marginal Farmers, Special Rural Works Programme, construction of Rural Roads Programme may be specially mentioned. The National  Social Assistance Programme (Old age pension scheme) is the new scheme to be implemented by the department with effect from 1996-97.

INDUSTRIES :- Despite vast  potential for Industrial Development due to enormous mineral, forest and agricultural resources, Meghalaya continues to be lagging behind in industrial growth due to a series of Complex constraints. It has been the endeavour of the Government  to remove some of these constraints which include inadequate infrastructure  and lack of entrepreneurial skills among the tribal population. The government have set up a single window agency for speedy clearance of proposal for setting up of industrial unit.

        Meghalaya Industrial  Development Corporation has invested so far in Equity and Preference Shares in 19 Companies with a total amount of Rs. 663.10 lakhs. The Corporation is also implementing Man Power Training Scheme, entrepreneurial Development Programme and Growth Centre Scheme.

        The first phase of the re-activation of Mawmluh-Cherra-Cement Limited has been completed and production stepped upto 680 MT per day. The second phase  is underway. The state has been exporting coal  and limestone  under Export Programme and the MMDC is acting as Nodal Agency to boost up such exports.    

        In the Small Scale Sector, the District Industries  Centres are playing an important role through Package Scheme of Incentives, Industrial exhibitions and Grants-in-Aid to Technically skilled Entrepreneurs. Meghalaya Khadi and Village Industries  Board and Meghalaya Handloom and Handicraft development Corporation Ltd. are functioning under the administrative control of the Department. The Prime Minister's  Rozgar Yojana is being implemented with the object of creating employment opportunities for the unemployed youths and develop entrepreneurship with financial support from the Banks. In 95-96, 550 youths are to be covered under this special scheme.

POWER DEPARTMENT :- The strategy for energy development forms an integrate part of any development strategy. Its efficient use and long term sustainability are the two important objectives of economic planning. During 1996-97 it is proposed to take up (i) Renovation and Modernisation of existing hydro power stations (ii) Implementation of ongoing generating schemes (iii) Survey and Investigation (iv) Transmission and Distribution and Rural Electrification works.    

        Under renovation and Modernisation programme, M.S.E.B. invited a technical Team  from the Japan  Consulting Institute with a view to get the machines thoroughly checked as well as to facilitate assistance from OECF,  Japan. The estimated cost of  renovation of stage I & II Power Stations are Rs. 94.76 crores and Rs. 94.40 crores respectively.

        Umiam-Umtru Stage IV HEP with Upper Khri diversion is the only ongoing 8th Plan Generation Scheme. The stage IV portion of the Scheme was completed in August, 1992 at an estimated cost of Rs. 132 crores. The works on  Upper Khri portion could not be taken up during 1995-96 due to non-settlement of land problem. However Rs. 50.00  lakhs is proposed for Upper Khri Component. An amount of Rs. 50 lakhs has been proposed during 1996-97 for implementation of Leishka HEP. Other new schemes could not be taken up due to financial constraints.

        Myntdu (Leishka HEP stage II) Umiam stage IV HEP, Umngot HEP (N) Umngi HEP and other Mini/Micro HEP Schemes are under survey and investigation.

        An approved annual outlay for Transmission and Distribution works has been proposed for Rs. 1805 lakhs.  The scheme includes modification,  augmentation of 132 KV Grid Sub-station at Mawlai and Khliehriat. Augmentation of Power station switch yards at Umiam stage-I and stage -III and Umtru Power  station has been taken up. An amount of Rs. 50 lakhs has been proposed during 1996-97 against this scheme to complete the left out work of Umtru-Power station. The construction of 132 KV Sub-station at NEHU will be commissioned by March, 1996. There are other new transmission schemes like construction of 132 KV sub-station  at Nongstoin also. Under Distribution works, Improvement of electric Power Supply at Shillong has already been taken up. It is anticipated that an amount of Rs. 206.15 lakhs would be spent during the year. A Master Plan has been drawn up for Meghalaya as a whole for strengthening and improvement of sub-transmission and distribution net work and an amount of Rs. 742 lakhs has been proposed for the purpose.

            The approved outlay for the year 1994-95 and 1995-96 against the Rural Electrification were Rs. 650 lakhs and Rs. 974 lakhs respectively; Rs. 524 lakhs is for electrification of 60 villages and Rs. 450 lakhs for system Improvement  scheme but due  to resource constraint, the scheme could not be implemented. A target for annual plan for 1996-97  is Rs. 1485 lakhs for village electrification and system improvement.

MINING AND GEOLOGY :- Meghalaya being a store house of economic minerals, the Department has taken up a programme to explore such minerals and is currently engaged in exploration of ground water resources and Geo-technical studies. During 1995-96, 9(nine) numbers of exploration programme of minerals, ground water, Geo-technical studies have been launched. An investigation programme on Granite around Nongpoh under N.E.C. will be completed by March,96.

        Besides exploration, the department is also responsible for general administration of mines and collection of revenue in the form of royalty and cess. In the current year upto December,'95 an amount of Rs. 10.12 crores of revenue has been collected and it is expected that the total revenue will be around Rs. 29.00 crores

        Construction of a Coal Depot Project at Jorabat under the Meghalaya Mineral Development Corporation (MMDC)  is in progress. During 1996-97, an amount of Rs. 174.00 lakhs under State Plan budget has been proposed. To augment the collection of revenue targeted at Rs. 39.20  crores, during 1996-97, the department will upgrade the existing infrastructure, and will take up investigation scheme on exploration of "High Grade Lime stone  of Nongkhlieh Ridge" in  Jaintia Hills under N.E.C.

EDUCATION :- Education will continue to receive highest priority of the Government. During 1995-96, 1621 Primary teachers were appointed under the operation Blackboard Scheme and nutritional support was given which benefited 2.50 lakh School children. Text Books and furniture were provided to the Primary Schools. 17 Secondary Schools were upgraded by opening of second stream of Arts/Science where Higher  Secondary classes were started. While the improvement of Education facilities and quality of Education will continue, special emphasis  will also be given on retention of children in schools to reduce the number of dropouts  and in the areas of Vocational Education. The programme of Adult Literacy launched under the Total Literacy campaign which was initiated under the National  Literacy Mission will be continued. In the Elementary Education, the approach will be on consolidation and completion of the  existing programmes such as operationalisation of the   Meghalaya  taking over of DCLP Schools Act 1993, imparting of training to the teachers and improvement in the facilities of Pre-Primary and Secondary  Levels  of Education. Special emphasis has been given on vocational and science  education.

SPORTS AND YOUTH AFFAIRS  :- The  highest Priority of the department is to develop Sports  infrastructure and facilities right at village, Block and State levels in a phased manner. Out of 32 projects undertaken for development of sports through out the State, 16 are expected to be completed during 1995-96. So far the Department has rendered financial assistance to 70 Sports Associations/Clubs/Organisations for carrying out sports activities in various disciplines. The Departments organises tournaments such as National Sports  Talent Tests, Preliminary football matches for Subroto Cup, Inter-School  Sports  and so on. The  Sports Authority of India has also set up a  special Project Development areas centre at the J.N. Sports Complex  at Polo ground, Shillong. During 1995 the state has also witnessed various National and Regional Competitions such as Junior National Football Championship, First Junior National Karate Championship etc.  Meghalaya boys and girls represented the country in Asian Karate Meet held at Manila. A gold medal in Marathon Meet held at Sikkim was secured by a girl from Meghalaya.

SOCIAL WELFARE :- Although development brings economic gains to society in general, specific measures are necessary to ensure that the disadvantaged and the weaker sections of the disadvantaged and the weaker sections of the population such as women, children, the disabled,  the elderly and the destitutes also receive some benefits. Various schemes  have been envisaged by the department with the help of the voluntary organisastions. Prosthetic aids to 64 persons have been provided Vocational training to 72  individuals, scholarships to 406 physically handicapped are being extended during 1995-96. there are 30 ICDS  projects which are implemented through 1827 Anganwadi Centres. The project also covers non-formal education   and nutrition. 835  needy children are provided with food, clothing and shelter through 24 voluntary organisations. Three Training centres for self employment of women at Shillong, Tura and Jowai are imparting training to 105 women in various trades. Under Supplementary Nutrition Programmes, 1,15,291  beneficiaries have been covered. The Annual Plan Outlay proposed for 96-97 is Rs. 95.00 lakhs under Social Welfare and Rs. 238.00 lakhs under Nutrition Programme.

HEALTH AND FAMILY WELFARE :- Health of the people is not only a desirable goal but is also an essential for proper development of human resources. Even as the country approaches the 21st Century, in vast expenses of rural areas, attaining the goal of "Health for All" still remains a stupendous task and our Health department is trying to  achieve the goal. Progress was made in building of rural health infrastructure by completion of on going schemes with 12 C.J.Cs completed  as on 1.4.95 and 2 more C.H.Cs  are expected to be completed by 1.4.96. Primary  Health Centres will have another addition   of 7 centres and 12 numbers in case of  Sub Centres. Construction of O.P.D. Complex at Shillong civil Hospital is progressing well.

        The District Project on National Cancer Control Programme, a newly funded scheme by the government of India will be implemented during 96-97 at  the Civil Hospital, Shillong with 10 beds for Cancer patients. Drug abuse has become  serious problem to our state. In order to combat this menance, Health Department have already initiated programmes. The project  will be implemented at the Civil Hospital Shillong. M.C.H  and Family Welfare Programme  in Meghalaya is implemented for improving the health of mother and children and for improving the quality of life.  A massive immunisastion programme  has been taken up to combat against Diptheria, Tetanus, Tuberculosis etc. Village Health Guide Scheme is being implemented in the state  as a 100%  Centrally sponsored Scheme. At present 1210 Health Guides are continuing at different Primary Health Centres in Meghalaya.

PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT :- Transport Sector bears a close and dynamic relationship with all other sectors of the economy as roads provide the basic infrastructure for transportation of goods and passengers. Road Transport is the only means of surface communication system particularly in hill state like Meghalaya. Accessibility of villages by all weather roads improved significantly during past few years.

        Total road density has increased from 12.35 Km/100 Sq.M to 28.50 KM/ 100 Sq. M at the end of three years of 8th Plan period. The department has attained a total length of 6437.094 Km upto the end of 1995-96. The proposed outlay in 96-97  is Rs. 6900.00 lakh with the physical target of 130  Km under formation and 100 Km under Metalling and  Black topping, 55 Km of improvement works and construction/reconstruction of 550 Running Meters of running bridges. By the end of 8th Five Year Plan the road density will reach 30.39 Km/100 Sq.M.  though it is still far below  the National average. Out of 4902 villages, 2446 villages have already been connected by roads and construction of rural roads will continue.    

        Substantial expenditure has been incurred on the construction of roads under certain other heads of development like NEC Schemes, Border Areas Development Schemes and National Highways.

        Building Wing of the department is implementing and executing the building projects of different departments of the Government including Meghalaya Houses in New Delhi and Calcutta.

 PUBLIC HEALTH ENGINEERING  :- Since Provision of Potable Safe drinking water and basic sanitation  are vital human  needs for health and efficiency, Rural Waster Supply and Rural Sanitation schemes are important components  of rural development. Rural Water Supply Scheme  are funded under Minimum Needs Programme, Accelerated Rural Water Supply Programme and Technology Mission. Sanitation Programme is funded under Centrally Sponsored Rural Sanitation Programme.

        Till 31.03.95, Rural Water supply scheme has covered a population of  11.40  lakh including 5088 out of 5522 main habitations and  1405 out of 2433 other habitation. During the current year, the available fund is Rs. 10 Crores under MNP and Rs. 3.24 crores under ARWSP  for implementation of the programme.

        Under Central Sector Scheme, on sharing basis  in the ratio of 75:25, so far works on 6 Iron Removal Plans (IRP) in West Garo Hills have been  taken up and 17 in West Garo Hills are proposed to be taken up during 1996-97 as a part of the effort to improve the quality of water.

        All the seven towns in the state have been provided with drinking waster facilities. Greater Shillong Water Supply Scheme has been partially completed. At present, 40 lacs gallons of water is being supplied in Shillong town daily. Works on remaining components   of the schemes are in progress. Beside this augmentation of Tura and Jowai Water Supply schemes have also been taken up. It is proposed to upgrade Simsanggiri Water supply scheme in 96-97.

        The Rural Sanitation Programme is being implemented under Central and State Sectors. Till March, 95, 11447 Units of Low Cost  Sanitary latrines have been constructed. The targets for 1995-96 and 96-97 are 3000 such units.

TRANSPORT :- The Transport Department is basically a regulatory Department. Its main functions are registration of vehicles, issue  of driving licences, permits for buses, trucks etc and to enforce the M.V.  Act. In addition, the department provides financial assistance to unemployed youths belonging to scheduled Tribes/Castes for purchase of buses, three wheelers etc. for which there is a provision of Rs. 2.00 lakhs during 1995-96. A small provision  is also kept for financial assistance  to voluntary Organisation for running school bus service. To expand Air travel facilities the National  Airport Authority has prepared a project for construction of an Airport at Baljek Valley in West Garo Hills   for which Rs. 7.00 crores was allotted by the Planning Commission in1994-95. National Airport Authority of India has already been given Rs. 1.50 crores. The department has also taken up survey for Ropeways  in the State and M/s  RITES,  Government of India undertaking has completed feasibility study in this respect. For this, Budget provision of Rs. 15.00 lakhs has been made during 1995-96. A computerised  Railway  Reservation facility is expected to be introduced shortly in Shillong, which will greatly help the Traveling Public for which the State Government  has provided required funds in the current year.

        Meghalaya  Transport Corporation under the administrative control of the department is playing a pivotal role in linking rural hinterlands. The corporation has provided service links to 643 villages in the state, Revenue  earning of the Corporation has increased from  Rs. 44.88 lakhs in 1976-77 to Rs. 380.00 lakhs in 1994-95. The Corporation is planning to acquire new buses for which Rs. 150.00 lakhs has been earmarked during 1996-97. 

TOURISM :- Tourism in Meghalaya has rich potential and the capability to generate large scale employment directly and indirectly. The Department of Tourism has taken up schemes to develop tourist spots and facilities to cater the needs of the tourists.  Improvement and  upgradation work of Orchid Hotel and Pinewood Hotel at Shillong and Orchid Lodge  at Tura  are in progress. Other schemes such as the development  of Marngar Monolith area, construction of view  points at various scenic  spots have already been taken up. Special programme for completion of Yatriniwas  at Shillong and Tura, Tourist Bungalow  at Balpakram and Baghmara and setting up of an amusement Park at Shillong have been provided in 1996-97 budget.

FOOD AND CIVIL SUPPLIES :-  Revamped Public  distribution System  envisages distribution of food  grains  like Rice and Wheat at prices lowered by Rs. 50/- per quintal. Other commodities like levy, Sugar, S.K. Oil and Iodised salt  are also distributed through the net work of 603  Fair Price Shop in Urban Areas  and 3134 Fair Price Shop in rural areas under the scheme. Allocations  from Government of India are being received regularly.

        A State Consumer Protection Council has been set up for ensuring the protection and promotion of the rights of the consumer. Redressal Agencies both at state and District level are looking into the complaints of the consumers. The cases registered in these forums shows an encouraging development of consumers consciousness.

        Various measures to streamline and improve the functioning of R.P.D.S.  in the state have been taken up. Most important among these measures are (i) 12 (twelve) vans have been purchased by the department  during last few  years for distribution of essential commodities in rural areas  (ii) Creation of additional storage capacity to ensure regular availability of P.D.S. commodities, and construction of a Godown with 500 MT at Pynursla and a Godown with 2000 MT at Khanapara within the Complex of State Ware Housing Corporation.

 REVENUE :- As Land in Meghalaya has not cadastrally been surveyed, the Government is contemplating to get all lands cadastrally surveyed and land records prepared to avoid litigations which will enable the people in getting financial benefits from Banks  and other financial institutions.

        In regard to Inter state Boundary problems, consultations with Government of Assam is going on at different levels. It may be mentioned that an Advisory Committee has been constituted recently to study and examine the basis  of demarcation of Inter-state Boundary between Meghalaya - Assam (Garo Hills Sector)

BORDER AREAS DEVELOPMENT :- With the partition of the Country, the traditional trade links of the people living  in border areas and adjoining areas which form part of Bangladesh were dislocated and their economy adversely affected. With a view to ameliorate the economic conditions of these people, various schemes through different departments have been  taken up. Under Agriculture Sector Loan-cum Subsidy, purchasing of tractors, power tillers, Drip Irrigation project have been envisaged. Under Education Scheme, it is proposed to cover up 20.000 students with an amount of Rs. 26.00 lakhs. Soil Conservation Department is also taking up Border areas programme for introduction of Rubber, Cashewnut and conservation of soil and water. The Scheme of Agro-custom Housing Centres has been implemented by MECOFED in  12 border areas with an aim to improve level of agriculture. An amount of Rs. 45.72 lakhs has been spent under road improvement schemes.

GENERAL ADMINISTRATION :- Recognising the shortage of office and residential accommodation in the state, schemes for construction of multi stories building in Secretariat Hill Complex, development of an integrated office and residential Complex for the two new districts at Nongpoh and Baghmara have been taken up. The Government has acquired  a building at Guwahati for use as State Guest House which is to start functioning soon. construction of residential accommodation for the staff under various categories has also been taken up.

HOME (POLICE) :- The law and order situation through out the State was normal during the year 1995.  Keeping  in view the complicated nature of crimes, efforts are on to modernise the Police Force and to provide  them the necessary equipments specially to deal with extremist organisations. Meghalaya  has the problem of infiltration of foreigners from Bangladesh and Nepal. To prevent such surreptitious influx  there are 88 BSF BPOs.  In addition, a number of watch Posts, check gates, Patrol posts, Bordering Police Stations have been set up. There is a proposal for creation of 10  additional check posts, Mobile Task Force under Prevention of Infiltration   of Foreigners Schemes. Detection of foreign nationals by Anti- Infiltration Personnel during the year 1995 is 3076. Approval of the Government of India for setting up the 3rd Meghalaya Police Battalion on the lines of India Reserve Battalion was obtained recently.

HOME CIVIL DEFENCE :- An an auxiliary force, the Home Guards and Civil Defence Organisation are  assisting the Police in law and order duties. They are deployed at vital installations, important buildings and store yards. During 1995, 163 urban Home Guard volunteers were trained and a batch of Instructors were sent to the National Civil Defence  College Nagpur for reconnaissance and Reporting.

POLITICAL DEPARTMENT :- The State Capital has remained by and large peaceful during 1995. Though  there has been no large-scale riots, there were some incidents of assaults during the month of January and February 1995  on the issue of Photo Identity Cards Scheme. The F.K.J.G.P.  activists made major issue of the selling of liquor in Meghalaya and a public rally was also held to highlight the issue. At that rally familiar issues of Trading License, Influx of Foreigners, Boundary issues etc were raised.

DISTRICT COUNCIL AFFAIRS  :- This  department look into the affairs of the Autonomous District Councils of  the State of Meghalaya. The District councils depend largely on Government grants for implementation of various schemes. An amount of Rs. 300.00 lakhs was provided in  the budget 1995-96  and an amount of Rs. 330 lakhs is proposed in 96-97. Under the Plan, Schemes for construction of village roads, small bridges, market places, play ground, ring well etc. are implemented  through the District Councils. Also under non-plan, a total amount of Rs. 50.00 lakhs was provided in 95-96 for rural communication.

URBAN AFFAIRS  :- Urbanisation is a natural consequence of economic and social changes in the development process. The challenge of reorienting the urbanisation process lies in overcoming the infrastructural deficiencies and taking the best advantage of economic momentum inherent in urbanisation. Accordingly, the department  have been formulating various plans for Shillong, Jowai and Tura. One  of the schemes is to ease the traffic congestion by way of constructing parking lots at different places in these towns. A major project of reconstruction of Tura market at an estimated cost of Rs. 607.00 lakhs is also likely to be completed soon. Moreover, with a view to relieve congestion in the capital city, the  department is undertaking a project for setting up of a Satellite Township for which 101.79 hectares of land has already been acquired. The department have undertaken a sustained effort towards construction  of sanitary latrines  and converting all dry latrines in the Municipal area of Shillong and Tura as steps to do away with the dehumanising practice of scavenging. It has been implementing various urban poverty alleviation programmes including  improvement  of slums such as Nehru  Rozgar Yojana with the involvement of Municipal Boards and Meghalaya urban  Development Agency.

SERICULTURE AND WEAVING :- Sericulture and Weaving falls within the Village and Small Industries sector which provide subsidiary occupation to the rural people. The main thrust of development of this sub sector has been to set up production and productivity. Under Sericulture, 85 block plantations have been organised including  15  during 1995-96 besides the improvement of existing plantations. Chowki rearing has been organised for distribution of Chowki Worms to the farmers and other necessary inputs.

        In Weaving, the departments  is trying to maintain quality control. Training and demonstration are oarganised through 36 Pilot  Handloom Weaving Centres. Modernisation of handloom in Cooperatives and outside is also being  taken up through the State Apex Society of weavers and the State's Handloom Cooperation respectively.

ELECTION DEPARTMENT :- With a view  to preventing impersonation of electors, the Election Commission had issued an Order to implement  a Scheme for issue of photo identity cards to electors. This important Scheme has been implemented  and completed on the 31st of December, 1995, as per extended  time frame specified by the Election commission. Out of the electorate  of 10,86,374, the total number of voters who have been photographed is 7,79,276. It appears that number of electors failed to come forward for photography inspite of adequate notice.

STATE LOTTERY :- In order to generate the much needed revenue, the Government has resumed the Lottery draws. The scheme envisages that the Distributing  Agent guarantees to pay a minimum return of Rs. 4.38 crores per annum as return to the Government. The first draw was held on 12.5.95 So far the state has earned a revenue of about Rs. 3.96 crores.

ART AND CULTURE :- There is a growing recognition  that promotion of Art and Culture is the core of all development  activities, providing  a sense of direction and guidance of human life, inculcation of proper values and attainment of excellence in every walk of life. In respect of performing Arts, various cultural programmes have been organised through out the State. Recently the Wangala Troupe represented the State in the inauguration of S.A.F.  Games at Madras. The department has taken  steps to set up District Libraries at Nongpoh and Baghmara. The State  Museum Building  will be opened to public with new Galleries.

ACTUAL 1994-95 :- During 1994-95 receipts on all accounts were Rs. 2989.33 crores while the expenditure were of the order of Rs. 2992.81 crores resulting in the deficit of Rs. 3.48 crores. together with the negative cash balance of Rs. 75.90 crores, the year closed with a deficit of Rs. 79.38 crores.

REVISED ESTIMATES 1995-96 :- The year 1995-96 opened with a negative cash balance of Rs. 79.38 crores. the Revised Estimates for 1995-96 shows a total receipts of Rs. 3445.84 crores on all accounts  and a total expenditure of Rs. 3444.74  crores leaving a surplus of Rs. 1.10  crores and together with a negative opening balance of Rs. 79.38  crores, the year is estimated to close with a negative balance of Rs. 78.27 crores.

BUDGET ESTIMATES 1996-97 :- I now come to the budget estimates for 1996-97. The year 1996-97 is expected to open with a negative cash balance of Rs. 78.27 crores. the revenue receipts are placed at Rs. 775.80 crores and the revenue expenditure is estimated at Rs. 650.20 crores, thus leaving a surplus of Rs. 125.60 crores. outside the revenue account, the receipts are estimated at Rs. 2780.80 crores and the expenditure is estimated at Rs. 2877.55 crores resulting in a deficit of Rs. 96.75 crores and thus the surplus of Rs. 125.68  crores on the revenue account will stand reduced to Rs. 28.85 crores. However taking into account the negative opening cash balance of Rs. 78.28  crores, the year will close with the estimated deficit of Rs. 49.43 crores. The broad details are indicated at Annexure - II

        The recommendations of the Tenth Finance Commission have been enforced from 1.4.95. Though the additionality allowed by the Government of India following acceptance of the Tenth Finance Commission has to some extent removed the aberration created under the Ninth Finance Commission  Award, it falls short of our expectations. For example, while the tenth Finance Commission provided for maintenance expenditure of the Plan  scheme completed by 31st March 1995,  it has made no provision for meeting the cost of Pay Revision which is therefore to be borne, entirely by the State Government from its own resource. The House is aware that the Third Meghalaya Pay Commission has been set up and started its work from April 1995. The report of the Commission is expected in 1996-97.

        I earnestly request the people to insist on cash memos whenever goods  are purchased so that the State does not lose revenue.

        With  these words, Sir, I present the Budget Estimates for 1996-97 before this august House for consideration and approval. However, to enable the Government to carry on with its duties and defray expenditure from the first day of the financial year 1996-97, I propose that the house may grant a Vote-on-Account.

Jaind Hind/Khublei/Mitela.

ANNEXURE  I

STATEMENT SHOWING THE SECTORAL ALLOCATION UNDER 'STATE PLAN' FOR 1994-95 AND 1996-97                                                   

 (Rs. in Lakhs)   
Name of  Sector  Outlay 1996-97
                                                                1

2

I. Agriculture and Allied Services -
 1.  Crop Husbandry 1182.00
 2.  Soil and Water Conservation 650.00
 3. Animal Husbandry 600.00
 4. Dairy Development 76.00
 5. Fisheries  135.00
 6. Forestry and Wildlife 800.00
 7. Storage and Warehousing 30.00
 8. Agricultural Research and Education 28.00
 9.  Agriculture Financial Institutions 1.00
10.  Marketing and Quality Control 115.00
11. Co-operation : 275.00
 TOTAL - I- Agriculture and Allied Services 3892.00
II  Rural Development 
1. Integrated Rural Development Programme (IRDP) 300.00
2. Integrated Rural Energy Programme (IREP) 100.00
3. Jawahar Rozgar Yojana 100.00
4. Land Reforms 100.00
5. Community Development  500.00
6. Employment Assurance Scheme (EAS) 115.00
7. Special Rural Work Programme 795.00
8. Research and Training in Rural Development. 15.00
TOTAL -II- Rural Development 2025.00
III. Special Area Programme
     Border Area Development Programme 328.00
     Total - III - Border Area Development 328.00
IV. Irrigation and Flood Control
 1. Major & Medium Irrigation  300.00
 2. Minor Irrigation 680.00
 3. Command Area Development 70.00
 4. Flood Control Projects 443.00
Total -IV -Irrigation and Flood Control 1493.00
V. Energy -
 1. Power 3565.00
 2. Non-Conventional sources of Energy (NRSE) 100.00
 Total -V- Energy 3665.00
VI. Industry and Minerals :-
 1. Village and Small Industries 165.00
 2. Sericulture and Weaving 140.00
 3. Industries (other than village and Small Industries) 920.00
 4. Mining  174.00
Total - VI- Industries and Minerals 1399.00
VII. Transport
1. Roads and Bridges 6980.00
2. Roads Transport 250.00
3. Other Transport Services 95.00
 Total - VII-Transport 7325.00
VIII. Science, Technology and Environment
1. Scientific Research including  Science and Technology 70.00
2. Ecology and Environment 50.00
Total-VIII- Science, Technology and Environment 120.00
IX. General Economic Services
1. Secretariat Economic Services 115.00
2. Tourism 400.00
3. Survey and Statistics 30.00
4. Civil Supplies 40.00
5.  Aids to District Councils 300.00
6. Weights and Measures 19.00
Total -IX- General Economic Services 904.00
X. SOCIAL SERVICES INCLUDING EDUCATION :-
1. General Education 2883.00
2. Technical Education 60.00
3. Sports and Youth Services 425.00
4. Art and Culture  165.00
    SUB TOTAL-EDUCATION  3533.00
5. Medical and Public Health 1331.00
6. Water Supply and Sanitation 1925.00
 7. Housing  340.00
 8. Urban Development 665.00
 9. Information and Publicity 90.00
10.Welfare of Schedule Castes Scheduled Tribes and Backward Classes. 7.00
11. Labour &  Labour Welfare 17.0
12. Training and Employment 110.00
13.  Social Security and Welfare 95.00
14. Nutrition (M.N.P.) 238.00
TOTAL - X SOCIAL SERVICES 8351.00
XI General Services :-
1. Jails 100.00
2. Stationery and Printing 50.00
3. Public Works (G.A.D. Buildings) 650.00
4.Other  Administrative  Services
   (i) Meghalaya Administrative Training Institute 50.00
   (ii) Fire Protection services 100.00
   (iii) Police Housing 100.00
   (iv) Judiciary Buildings 100.00
Total - XI - General Services 1150.00
GRAND TOTAL 30652.00

ANNEXURE -II

THE FINANCIAL POSITION FOR THE YEAR 1996-97  WITH THOSE OF THE  PREVIOUS YEARS.                                                

 Rs. in lakhs

Heads Actuals Actuals Budget Revised Budgets
1993-94 1994-95 1995-96 1995-96 1996-97
1 2 3 4 5 6
Opening Balance (-)60,07.46 (-)75,90.51 (-)116, 87.14  (-)79,38.06 (-)78,27.73
Revenue Receipt 500,78.94 530,30.14 641,73.85 729,74.83 775,80.19
Capital under the Consolidated Fund 371,16.35 301,48.04 147,90.65 142,30.47 144,24.82
Capital Receipt under the Contingency Fund 6,31.92 9,01.07 5,99.85 13,86.59 5,99.85
Capital Receipt under the Public Account 20,66,80.87 21,48,54.53 25,13,44.10 25,59,92.32 26,30,55.21
TOTAL RECEIPT 29,45,08.08 29,89,33.78 33,09,08.45 34,45,84.21 35,56,60.07
GRAND TOTAL 28,85,00.62 29,13,43.27 31,92,21.31 33,66,46.15 34,78,32.34
Revenue Expenditure 482,85.11 456,95.19 600,34.02 602,04.40 650,20.46
Capital Expenditure under the Consolidate Fund 426,22.82 339,24.32 259,46.68 278,80.17  251,08.82
Capital Expenditure under the Contingency Fund 6,31.92 9,01.07 5,99.85 13,86.59 5,99.85
Capital Expenditure under the Public Account 20,45,51.28 21,87,60.75 25,03,54.50 25,50,02.72 26,20,46.41
TOTAL EXPENDITURE 29,60,91.13 29,92,81.33 33,69,35.05 34,44,73.88 35,27,75.54
Closing Balance (-)75,90.51 (-)79,38.06 (-)177,13.74 (-)78,27.73 (-)49,43.20
GRAND TOTAL 28,85,00.62 29,13,43.27 31,92,21.31 33,66,46.15 34,78,32.34
Net Result :-
(a) In Revenue Account (+) 17,93,83 (+)73,34.95 (+)41,39.83 (+)127,70.43 (+)1,25,59.73
(b) Outside Revenue Account (-)33,76.88 (-)76,82.50 (-)101,66.43 (-)126,60.10 (-)96,75.20
(c) All Accounts excluding the opening and closing Balance (-)15,83.05 (-)3,47.55 (-)60,26.60 (+)1,10.33 (+)28,84.53

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