MEGHALAYA LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY


WINTER SESSION

(WEDNESDAY, THE 13th DECEMBER, 2006).


BULLETIN No. 3

 

The House met at 10.00 a.m. with the Hon’ble Speaker in the Chair. The day was devoted for the transaction of Government Business.

1.

QUESTIONS :

 

Starred question from 34 to 79 and Unstarred Question from 30 to 39 were disposed of.

2.

ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE CHAIR :

 

The Hon’ble Speaker announced that the Business Advisory Committee sat again on the 11.12.06 and recommended that immediately after the Government Business are over on the 13.12.06 the pending motion/motions should be taken up for discussion for two hours due to non receipt of the list of motions in time on that day.

The House was adjourned to meet again at 11.30 a.m. due to erratic supply of power.

3.

ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE CHAIR AFTER ADJOURNMENT :

 

The Hon’ble Speaker informed the House that he had received a notice of adjournment from Shri Manas Choudhuri to discuss the implementation of SRWP and PDS. He informed the member that under Rule 57 (ii) of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly, not more than one matter could be discussed on the same motion and the motion must be restricted to a specific matter of recent occurrence and therefore, rejected the motion for adjournment.

4.

ZERO HOUR NOTICE :

 

Under Rule 49 A of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly, Shri P.T. Sawkmie drew the attention of the Minister in-charge Transport to the news item appearing in the Shillong Times under the caption “enquiry orders into the truckers charges”. He stated that Shri Abu Khalam of the Goalpara District Truckers Association alleged that the politicians and the Minister of Meghalaya were involved in illegal collection of money from the truck drivers. He was of the opinion that the Government should take a stand on this by demanding from him to furnish evidences on this count and if he cannot do so, the Government should file a defamation suit against him.

In reply the Minister in-charge of Transport informed that the allegations of the President of the Association was baseless and the Chief Secretary had been directed to find out the veracity of the statement. There is only 1 weigh and not 7 as alleged. In addition, there are 3 weigh bridges run by the Directorate of Mineral Resources. He further stated that 10 illegal toll gates in East Garo Hills had been demolished. He further informed the House that Smti. Deborah Marak former Minister of Transport had filed a case against the person.

5.

ZERO HOUR NOTICE :

 

Under Rule 49 A of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly, Shri P.M. Syiem drew the attention of Minister in-charge District Council Affairs to the news item appearing in Mawphor dated 24.11.2006 under the caption “Dei u C.S. bad ki I.A.S. ba set ia ka ain direct funding”. While initiating the discussion felt that it will affect all developmental activities of the State if the allegation is true. He was of the view that the State Government should not be a mute spectator on this issue because this is very serious.

The Minister in-charge of the District Council Affairs at the outset stated that the statement made by the C.E.M. was very very unfortunate and uncalled for. He informed the mover that there has been no such proposals as “Direct Funding Law” by the KHADC. However, a bill known as “The Khasi Hills Autonomous District (Constitution and Administration of community development organization) Bill, 2006” was received by the Government on the 16th March, 2006 which was framed under paragraph 3 (1) (e) and (f) of the Sixth Schedule to the Constitution of India. On receipt of the Bill from KHADC, the Department examined the same in consultation with the Law and Community and Rural Development Department for their views. Several meetings were held and a final view of the ADVOCATE General on the Bill is awaited. In this regard the Government will formulate a clear policy in order to avail the benefits of the different schemes of the Government of India. Once the comments is obtained, the Government will formulate its views and submit to the Governor’s Secretariat for consideration and approval of the Governor.

6.

CALLING ATTENTION NOTICE :

 

Under Rule 54(1) of the Rules pf Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly, Shri P.T. Sawkmie drew the attention of Minister in-charge of Cabinet Affairs to the news item published in Mawphor dated 9.12.2006 under the caption “Hadien 18 snem tang 17 tylli ki DPR la punkhreh”. He lamented that out of 168 projects submitted to the Government of India only 17 had been sanctioned which shows that there has been a negative approached from the State Government. He was of the view that the North Garo Hills and Khliehriat, should be given separate districts and a sub-division for Pyrnursla which has been crying hoarse should also be created.

Replying to the Call Attention Notice, the Chief Minister informed the House that the Government of India created the NLCPR from the year 1998-99 and it was taken over by the Ministry of DONER from 2002-03. In 2006-07, out of the 168 projects proposed, 14 projects at a total estimated cost of Rs.105.99 crores were retained on 27.7.06 for which 7 DPR had not been submitted. The State Government had requested the Ministry of DONER to sanction remaining projects on priority basis.

7.

THE MEGHALAYA AMUSEMENT AND BETTING TAX (AMENDMENT) BILL, 2006 :

 

Shri J.D. Rymbai, Chief Minister in-charge Taxation moved that the Meghalaya Amusement and Betting Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2006 be taken into consideration.

Shri Edmund K. Sangma moved that the entire clause 3D as proposed in the Amendment Bill be deleted.

While initiating the discussion, he was of the opinion that the fixation of the rate of taxes should be discussed in the House to benefit the poor people. The power of the House should not be diluted he felt.

Shri Manas Choudhury, Shri M. Rava, Shri T.D. Shira, Shri J.M. Marak, felt that the Bill should not be amended and that the rated of taxes should be brought before the House for discussion.

Shri P.M. Syiem supported the Government intention to revise the rate of taxes and should be wholly left to it to fill up the coffers of the State.

The Chief Minister in the course of his replies informed that the amendment is meant only for Cinema halls and not for betting. As could be seen, most of the Cinema halls had been closed down in the country because they could not compete with cable TV operators. Therefore, in order to bring the tax at par with cable TV operators the Government felt the need to revise the amusement tax on cinema halls. He was also of the considered opinion that to bring the Bill into the House regularly will bring undue delay which is not at all in the interest of the State.

Since the mover to the amendment did not withdraw, it was put to vote and lost.

8.

THE MEGHALAYA AMUSEMENT AND BETTING TAX (AMENDMENT) BILL, 2006 :

 

Shri J.D. Rymbai, Chief Minister in-charge Taxation moved that the Meghalaya Amusement and Betting Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2006 be passed.

(The Meghalaya Amusement and Betting Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2006 was put to vote and passed.

9.

THE MEGHALAYA FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY AND BUDGET MANAGEMENT (AMENDMENT) BILL, 2006 :

 

Dr. Donkupar Roy, Deputy Chief Minister in-charge Finance moved that the Meghalaya Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (Amendment) Bill, 2006 be taken into consideration.

(The motion was carried and the Bill was taken into consideration).

But since there was no amendment, the Deputy Chief Minister moved that the bill be passed.

(The motion was carried and the Meghalaya Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (Amendment) Bill, 2006 was passed.

10.

LAYING OF THE 50TH REPORT OF MAWMLUH CHERRA CEMENTS LTD :

 

Shri J.D. Rymbai, Chief Minister laid the 50th Report of Mawmluh Cherra Cements Ltd.

11.

PENDING MOTION :

 

Shri P.M. Syiem who was on his feet in the last session was allowed to complete his speech

Continuing his discussion, the mover was apprehensive that the unabated influx of foreigners into the State will affect the population structure. Therefore, he was of the considered opinion that the Government should do something to contain this alarming trend. Political considerations also should be set aside in order to solve this lingering problem once and for all. Just by detecting the foreigners and push back into Assam will not solve the problem in the near future. What the Government needs to do is to be vigilant in guarding the borders.

Shri P.T. Sawkmie, Shri J.M. Marak, Shri H.S. Lyngdoh, Shri Boldness Nongum, Shri H. Suchiang, Shri Edmund K. Sangma expressed their concern over the rise of foreign nationals in the State especially in the coal belt of Garo Hills and Jaintia Hills, Barapathar, Police Bazar, Polo etc.

Shri Manas Choudhury was not against the deportation of foreigners and their presence was not alarming as stated by the mover. However, he felt the need to protect genuine citizens since it is having a negative impact on the State population. He felt that proper identity should be given to genuine citizens and the need to take a holistic view to grapple with the problem.

Shri Friday Lyngdoh felt in line with Shri Manas Choudhury that the genuine citizens should not be harassed. He was of the opinion that local representative should be taken into confidence because it is affecting the ability of the Government machinery if it is dependent on the non Government agencies to detect foreigners in various parts of the State

In reply to the motion by Shri P. M. Syiem, felt that if everything is left to the Government the problem of influx will not be solved. Therefore, he sought the cooperation of every citizens to curb this menace. He cited an example that if land is sold to a company/individual it will be registered in Assam as a result of which these lands do not belong to Meghalaya anymore. The Government had constituted a Cabinet Committee under the chairmanship of the Home Minister and other Ministers as members to look after the problem of influx. The factors responsible for influx of illegal migrants are cheap labour and failure in guarding the international borders.

In this regard, the Government had set up seven District Task Forces for detecting Bangladeshi nationals in each district. Deputy Commissioners were directed to review the work of the District Task Force once a month. In addition, Meghalaya Police share intelligence with B.S.F. regularly on day-to-day basis. It holds coordination meeting at two levels which includes directional level and functional level. He informed the House that the State Government had written to the Government of India that the multi purpose National Identity Cards Scheme should be extended to Meghalaya also to provide effective identification system. The B.S.F. has 80 border outpost all along the international border to check infiltration from across the border.

12.

ADJOURNMENT :

 

Since there is no more agenda, the House stands adjourned till 14th December, 2006 at 10.00 a.m.

 

Secretary,

 

Meghalaya Legislative Assembly