Saturday, June 11, 1977.

        The Assembly met at 9-30 A.M. with the Speaker in the Chair.

        The day was devoted for transaction of Private Members Business.


        Unstarred question Nos.86, 87, 89 to 95, 97 to 99 and 102 to 104 with supplementaries thereto were disposed of. Replies to Unstarred Questions Nos.88,96,100 and 101 were laid on the members' table.

2.    ZERO HOUR :

        Shri. M.N. Majaw  raised the following matters and wanted Government to take suitable actions in each case :-

(i) Tapping of telephones of members of the Assembly by some officers of the Home Department.

(ii) Interception of letters written by some Assembly members.

(iii) Certain death cases in the Ri Bhoi area due to dysentery.

            The Chief Minister informed the House that the Indian Telegraphs Act, 1885 had empowered the State Governments to resort to tapping of telephones and interception of mails for security and integrity of the country. But he regretted that in the interest of the Security of the State no further disclosure could be made in this regard.

        So far as the reported death cases in the Ri Bhoi area are concerned, the Minister for Health, Shri. S.K. Marak, informed the House that after receipt of information about the deaths, necessary medical teams were sent to the area. Reportedly, the deaths were caused by bacillary dysentery. The situation was brought under control by inoculation of T.A.B.C. vaccine in affected areas.


        Shri. G. Mylliemngap called the attention of the Chief Minister under Rule 54 of the Assembly Rules to the news-item published in the Assam Tribune dated June 2, 1977, under the caption "5 killed in truck accident near Shillong".

        The Chief Minister made a statement informing the House that truck No.ASU.383 was involved in an accident between 5/8 and 6/8 km. post on the Shillong-Jowai Road resulting in the on-the-spot death to 4 persons and serious injury to 4 others. The fifth person died in the hospital. The absconding driver had surrendered to the Police on June, 3, 1977, and a case ha already been registered in the Shillong Court.


        (i) The Speaker informed the House that  the following members had been elected uncontested to the Committee on Public Accounts for the term beginning July 7, 1977 :-

1. Shri S.P. Swer,
2. Shri Akrammozzaman,
3. Shri P.G. Momin,
4. Shri S.D. Khongwir, and
5. Shri O.L. Nongtdu.

        Shri S.P. Swer was appointed by the Speaker as the Chairman of the Committee.

        (ii) The following members were also elected uncontested to the Committee on Estimates for the term beginning July 7, 1977 :

1. Shri Plansing Marak,
2. Shri D.N. Joshi,
3. Shri E. Kurbah,
4. Shri Jackman Marak,
5. Shri W. Syiemiong,
6. Shri A. Warjri, and 
7. Mrs. M.D. Shira.

        Shri Plansing Marak was appointed by the Speaker as Chairman of the Committee.


        Shri Maham Singh, Minister, Revenue, made a short statement correcting his earlier reply to Unstarred question No.73 which was disposed of by the House on the previous day.


        Shri S.P. Swer, member in-charge, moved the motion for consideration of the Meghalaya Transfer of Land (Regulation) (Amendment) Bill, 1977.

        Shri B.B. Lyngdoh was in favour of the consideration of the Motion.

        The Minister for Revenue, Shri Maham Singh, opposed the Motion on the ground that the spirit of the Bill went against the policy of the Government pursued so far since the enactment of the Land Transfer Act. The Chief Minister also opposed the consideration of the Bill on the ground that if the proposed amendment was accepted it might hit the fundamental rights of a person and might cause immense hardships to a tribal compelled  by circumstances to dispose  of his land.

        The Motion was thereafter put to voice vote and lost.


        (i) Shri B.B. Lyngdoh resumed discussion on the following motion which was moved by Shri S.D. Khongwir on June 7, 1977 :-

" This House do now discuss about the measures for the protection and development of the tribal people of the State".

           He expressed uneasiness over the fact that non-tribals had been dominating in all spheres of economic activities even in the remotest corner of the State, and maintained that  the Sixth Schedule to the Constitution was not sufficient to safeguard the interest of the tribals.

        Shri H. Hadem and Shri Reidson Momin also participated in the discussion.

        Replying to the discussion, the Chief Minister stated what the Government was very much anxious about the welfare of the Schedule Tribes, Scheduled Castes and other weaker sections of the society residing in Meghalaya. The entire plan and programme of the Government were being implemented for the well-being of the tribals who constituted 80% of the population. He also apprised the House that State Government had even represented to the Government of India to incorporate additional provisions in the Constitution in line with Article 37 1A but the Centre's view was that such a measure was not necessary in view of the existence of the Sixth Schedule. He agreed with the suggestions of earlier speakers that a round table conference representing all shades of opinions need be held to consider various measures for safeguarding the interest of the tribal and other backward classes and for containing the population structure of the State.

        (ii) Motion No.2 was not moved and Motion No.3 was deemed to have been withdrawn owing to the absence of the member.

        (iii) Motions Nos.4 and 6 were clubbed and Shri W. Syiemiong moved Motion No.4 which was worded thus:

" This House do now discuss the functioning of the Meghalaya House at Calcutta and ancillary matters".

         He expressed unhappiness over the manner in which the Meghalaya House at Calcutta was being run by the present Officer in-charge.

        Shri M.N. Majaw fell in line with Shri Syiemiong and leveled certain allegations against the officer.

        The discussion could not be concluded for want of time.


        The House was adjourned by the Deputy Speaker till 9.30 A.M. on June 13, 1977.

Sd/- D.S. Khongdup,
Meghalaya Legislative Assembly.

Memo. No. LB.19/MLA/77/15,  dated Shillong, the 16th June, 1977.