The Assembly met at 9.30 A.M. with the Speaker in the Chair.
Shri. B. Dan (JNU) of the United Legislature Party took the floor and confined his observation mostly on the need for retransfer of Blocks I & II of the Karbi Anglong District of Assam to Meghalaya, proper and timely distribution of fertilizers and proper equipment and manning of health centres in rural areas.
Shri. Salseng Marak (Cong.) was of the opinion that the present Government was constituted under duress in as much as no clear mandate was given by the electorate in favour of any party and hence he felt that the Government would not be able to deliver the goods to the people. He, however, made it known that this party would not oppose any policy of the Government directed towards genuine welfare of the people. He complained that the policy statement on certain matters as outlined in the Governor's Address was vague. He was in favour of exploiting the uptapped agro-forest and mineral resources and giving larger impetus to small and cottage industries. He also pleaded for inclusion of the contiguous areas bordering the Districts of Goalpara and Kamrup of Assam predominantly inhabited by the tribal people into Meghalaya while settling the boundary issue with Assam.
Shri. Ledishon Nongsiang from the United Legislature Party (HSPDP) blamed the past regime for neglecting the boundary issue and for loss of revenue to the Exchequer for not enforcing the terms of the leases to the Hindustan Steels Ltd. for exploiting sillimanite ores at Sonapahar.
Shri. B.K. Roy (Cong.) was highly critical about cases of rawdism and lawlessness which was alleged took place in some parts of Shillong Town on the evening when the results of the last General Elections were announced, and referred to the unfortunate assault on a local journalist by some miscreants on the same day when the present Ministry was sworn n.
Shri. E.K. Mawlong (Ind.) of the United Legislature Party was outspoken about the harassment meted out to the villagers living in areas bordering Assam by the officials of the Government of Assam and the inadequacy of fertilizers supplied to the cultivators.
Shri. Bhaskar Choudhury (Cong.) wanted that the permanent residential certificate required to be produced by non tribals in certain matters should be done away with. He expressed dissatisfaction on the reported exclusion of a bulk of non-tribal population from the electoral roll.
Shri. Albin Lamare (APHLC) of the United Legislature Party was unhappy over the fact that an area comprising about 500 sq. miles had been carved out of the Jaintia Hills and tagged with Assam.
Shri. B. Koch (Cong.) wanted primary education to be taken over by the State Government.
Shri. L. Kharlukhi (HSPDP) of the United Legislature Party was unhappy over the mal-functioning of the employment exchange. He expressed dissatisfaction over the manner of distribution of fertilizers in the past years.
Shri. Girash Marak (APHLC) of the United Legislature Party wanted fresh mandate of the people in constituting the Garo Hills District Council.
Shri. Snomick Kalwing (Cong.) stated that the tribals in Meghalaya need not necessarily be much concerned about safeguarding their distinct identity and interests as these have been already guaranteed by the Sixth Schedule to the Constitution. He rather stressed the need for land reform legislations to guarantee rights and title over land to the actual tillers.
Shri. C.S. Sangma (APHLC) of the United Legislature Party wanted all developmental schemes to be executed in right earnest for the real benefit of the people.
As there was no more members who were willing to participate, the Speaker adjourned the House at 1.05 P.M. till 9.30 A.M. on Monday, March 27, 1978.
|Sd/- D.S. Khongdup|
|Meghalaya Legislative Assembly.|