MEGHALAYA LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY
RE-ASSEMBLED BUDGET SESSION, 2003
( TUESDAY, JUNE 24, 2003 )
The House met at 10 a.m. with the Hon'ble Speaker in the Chair. The day was devoted for the transaction of Government business :-
1. QUESTIONS :
Starred question Nos. 25, 27, 28, 29, 31, 32, 33, 35, 36, 38, 39 and 40 with Supplementaries thereto, 42, 43 and 44 without Supplementary, have been disposed of.
Starred questions Nos.26, 30, 34, 37 and 41 lapsed since the questionnaire was absent.
2. GENERAL DISCUSSION ON THE BUDGET :
Shri A.L. Hek, initiated the general discussion on the budget. Describing the budget a "blind man" the hon'ble Member called for a categorical reply from the Chief Minister as to whether this budget is a temporary or tentative one. He started that this budget lags the direction, had no accountability since it has failed to pinpoint the genuine problems concerning the people of the State. However, the hon. Member from Pynthorumkhrah added that this budget mentioned only the Central allocations but genuine problems like unemployment problems and others did not find a place at all.
Referring to Tourism, the member urged upon the Government to take a serious note to improve Tourism in the State by tapping all the potentials available within in order to boost tourism and to generate employment to the youth. On Sports and Youth Affairs, he mentioned that the only stadium which the State is having is presently in a dilapidated condition and called for a Sports policy and proper planning by the concerned department in this regard.
As regard the E.P.I.P in Byrnihat, he requested the Government to ensure sufficient supply of power to these industries so that they can generates more employment. The hon. Member also urged upon the Government to look into the non-availability of cement in the market and not to propose a new tax on passengers and goods which may have an adverse affect on public at large.
On Transport, he focused the Government's attention to non payment of salary and pension to the staff of the M.T.C. regularly. He called for streamlining the procedure and urgent measures to pay the salary and pension to the staff of M.T.C. regularly. He expressed dissatisfaction on wasteful spending of public money by the non-commission of the coal depot at Mawsmai and the Yatri Niwas at Polo. The hon. Member further called for a reply as to why the State Government has not been able to avail the amount sanctioned by the Government of India in connection with the Jowai and Tura Water Supply Schemes.
Shri Edmund K. Sangma, Shri Timothy D. Shira, Shri Nidhu Ram Hajong and Shri Francis Pondit R. Sangma, participated.
3. FINANCE MINISTER'S REPLY TO THE GENERAL DISCUSSION ON THE BUDGET :
Shri D. D. Lapang, Chief Minister replied to the general discussion on the budget. Giving a comprehensive statement to the points and suggestions raised by the participants in the course of their discussion, the Chief Minister express his sincere thanks for their constructive suggestions and criticism and stated that the Government is always looking with an open mind and with a sense of involvement to the hon. Members from both sides of the House.
Replying to the point raised by he hon. Member from Pynthorumkhrah with regard to Central allocation of funds, he stated that the procedure of the Central Government as well as the basis of the present the budget estimates on the basis of the estimated receipts and that the actual allocation from the Centre always depends on the amount by the funding agency depending on the performance of the Government in this regard. The Chief Minister refuted the statement that the budget is a "blind man".
He informed the House that revision is made by in-coorporating the proposals of 2003-04 in the budget of 2004-05 in case it is necessary.
As regards the encroachment by the people from Karbi Anglong of Assam in Mukhroh and Khanduli areas of Jaintia Hills, the Chief Minister replied that the Government is not a silent spectators on this. He informed the hon. Member from Mawprem that he had organised a meeting with the Chief Minister of Assam wherein the leaders from Karbi Anglong where invited and the Chief Executive Member of the Karbi Anglong and Jaintia Hills District Councils also attended the meeting in which it was decided that the Chief Secretaries of both States should constitute a Co-ordination Committee at the level of Deputy Commissioners of the two districts including the C. E. Ms of Karbi Anglong and the Jaintia Hills District Councils. However, he informed that the Deputy Commissioners of both sides had a meeting with the C.E.M. of Jaintia Hills and the C.E.M. of Karbi Anglong District Councils on 21st of this month. On the deteriorating law and order situation at Mukroh village, he informed that one Platoon of Police force had been deployed with an instruction to have a close watch on the activities of the counterpart in Assam so that a sense of security should prevail and the cultivators could work in peace.
On the question of fire fighting ability, the Chief Minister replied that one Superintendent of Police had been assigned for Fire Fighting Service in the State and that modernisation of equipments had been started by imparting training to the fire fighting squad. He further told that last year, Government had sanctioned 34.39 lakhs for purchase of fire vehicles for Fire Fighting Service.
The Chief Minister replied to the points raised by the participants and assured that other points which he has not been able to cover have been noted down by the concerned departments for implementation.
He also replied to clarification sought for by the hon. Members.
3. ADJOURNMENT :
The House rose at 1.25 p.m. and stood adjourned till 10 a.m. on Wednesday, the 25th June, 2003.
Meghalaya Legislative Assembly.