The Assembly met at 10 A.M. with the Hon'ble Speaker in the Chair. The day was devoted for transaction of Government Business.
Starred Questions No.8 to No.13 with supplementaries thereto were disposed of.
Initiating the discussion on his Motion of thanks to the Governor's Address, Shri Robert Kharshiing, lauded the various policies and programmes proposed to be taken up during the financial year, 1991-1992.
Shri C.B. Marak moved the following amendment to the Motion of Thanks :-
" Substitute the full-stop (.) at the end of the Motion of Thanks by a comma (,) and add the following:
' but regrets that the Governor's Address does not make any mention, among others, of the permanent taking over of the Primary Education by the State Government, Protection of minorities and land cadastral survey'.
Moving his amendment, Shri C.B. Marak criticised, the policies of the Government with regard to the taking over of Primary Education by the Government from the three autonomous District Councils. He suggested this should be done on a permanent basis and also with regard to other related programmes enunciated in this Address. He expressed concern why the Governor was silent on the questions of (1) Protection of the Rights of the minorities in the State (2) Non-taking up of Joint Cadastral Survey in the State with special reference to inter-state boundaries.
Shri M. Mukhim supported the Motion of Thanks. He pleaded for the need to construct more roads and to improve communications in his constituency.
Shri O.L. Nongtdu supported the amendment to the Motion of Thanks moved by Shri C.B. Marak. He advocated the causes of L.P. School Teachers, pleaded for security of their services in order to improve the standard of Education. He opposed channelisation of funds for the District Councils and endorsed the views of the movers. He stressed the urgency to have land records codification and Cadastral Survey, the construction of the border road linking Jaintia Hills with Assam via Haflong which scheme was started by the N.E.C. He also urged upon the Government to complete the construction of stage 4 Project by the MSEB and to stop going in for new projects. He reiterated the necessity to provide more land to the landless cultivators.
Shri Salseng C.Marak raised the point of order under rule 275 (A) which stated that the Minister concerned, when the matter relating to his portfolio is under discussion in the House, shall not leave the House without the previous permission of the Speaker.
However, the Chairman informed the Member that the Chief Minister has obtained the prior permission from the Chair.
Shri K.C. Boro also supported the amendment. He dwelt at length on the Army Operation launched in Tikrikilla and other interior places in Garo Hills to track down the ULFA activists causing lot of inconvenience and harassment to the innocent people by the Army. He urged upon the Government to take measures to protect the minority tribes to ensure fair treatment at par with other tribals. He opposed the abrupt implementation of the new education policy by the Government.
Participating in the debate on the Governor's Address Shri P.K.Raswai supported the amendment moved by Shri C.B. Marak. He also endorsed the view of the mover in so far as channelisation of funds to the District Councils is concerned. He differed with PHE Department's going in for big schemes. He suggested the need to construct bridges or replacing the wooden ferry by a steel ferry as an alternative to help villagers in his constituency. He also requested the Government for establishment of a police outpost at Balat to check infiltration. He wanted to know from the Minister concerned as t why L.P. School Teachers who have been regularised were terminated by the local managing Committee in his constituency. He pleaded for proper planning with model blue prints by the State and District Planning boards for the West Khasi Hills.
Shri S.C.Marak also rose to support the amendment. He too, endorsed the view of Shri K.C. Boro on the alleged atrocities committed by the Army during their operation in certain pockets of North and West Garo Hills. He urged that such operation should have been conducted by the Army with the help of the State Police to avoid friction and harassment to the poor and innocent people. He wanted to complete codification of land records for the entire State. He also wanted to know the Government's stance on the question of transferring primary education to the District Councils or its take over by the Government on permanent basis. He opposed diversion of funds from the Agriculture Department to which department a special impetus has been given in the Governor's address. He was surprised why the Governor was silent on Forest Department programme. Further, he wished to know from the Government as to the latest position on "Yatri Niwas" which was sanctioned by the Government of India for Rs.39 lakhs and out of which, Rs.20 lakhs was already released in 1988. He suggested steps for improvement of water supply schemes in the rural areas.
Shri Lot Singh Sangma, supported the amendment. He requested the Government to see that doctors are posted in H.H.Cs and Sub-Centres in rural areas. He also desired that the purchase of sizeable timbers for railway tracks should be done from the Forest Development Corporation instead of private parties.
The House rose at 2 P.M. and was adjourned till 10 A.M. on Thursday the 21st March, 1991.
Meghalaya Legislative Assembly.