Proceedings of the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly after the first General Election at 9-30 a.m. on Wednesday, the 30th March, 1977 in the Assembly Chamber, Shillong with the Hon'ble Speaker in the Chair.
Mr. Speaker :- Let us taken up item No. 1.i.e, Unstarred Question No.3. Any Supplementary question ?
( Replies to which were placed on the Table )
Investigation of corruption cases by the Central Bureau of Investigation
Shri K.M. Roy Marbaniang asked :
3. Will the Chief Minister be pleased to state whether it is a fact that the Central Bureau of Investigation is not allowed to investigate corruption cases in the States ?
Shri W.A. Sangma (Chief Minister) replied :
3 - No.
Shri K.M. Roy Marbaniang :- Mr. Speaker, Sir, in reply to question No. 3 the Government has stated "No" which means that they have not obstructed the C.B.I. to investigate into the State affairs. May we take it for granted that they mean like that ?
Shri W.A. Sangma (Chief Minister) :- Yes, Mr. Speaker, Sir. Under the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, it was clear that in case of the State Government employee the C.B.I. can investigate into the corruption cases in the State.
Mr. Speaker :- Unstarred Question No. 4. Any supplementary Question ?
Improvement of Baghmara - Maheshkhola Road
Shri K.M. ROY Marbaniang asked :
4. Will the Minister-in-charge of Public Works Department be pleased to state -
(a) When will the road from Baghmara to Maheshkhola be improved and blacktopped ?
(b) The reasons for stopping construction works on the following roads :-
(i) Umpung - Mawpud Road;
(ii) Mawsynram - Syntein Road; and
(iii) Mawsynram - Thieddieng Road ?
Shri E. Bareh (Minister, Public-Works Department) replied :
(a) - No definite date can be given. Government of India has approved the improvement of the road under sensitive Border Area programme and execution is being entrusted with the Border Roads Organisation.
(b) - The construction works on these roads have not been stopped. Works are in progress, and planned according to availability of funds.
Shri S.P. Swer :- Mr. Speaker, Sir, may we know from the Minister concerned whether the Border Roads Organisation has its own engineers.
Shri Edwingson Bareh (Minister, P.W.D.) :- Yes, they have their own engineers.
Shri S.P. Swer :- May we know under which Division this Baghmara to Maheshkhola Road falls ?
Shri Edwingson Bareh (Minister, P.W.D.) :- It is under Baghmara Division.
Shri K.M. Roy Marbaniang :- Does this fall under the Border Road Organisation or does it fall under the State ?
Shri W.A. Sangma (Chief Minister) :- According to Government of India's instruction there are some roads to be taken up by the Border Road Organisation. So the road from Baghmara to Maheshkhola of I remember correct will be taken up by the Border Road Organisation.
Shri S.P. Swer :- With regard to answer to question No. 4 (b) (iii) whether the Government is aware that these are some plots of land through which the road was to be constructed which are in dispute I am referring to the road from Mawsynram to Thieddieng.
Shri Edwingson Bareh (Minister, P.W.D.) :- Yes, there was a dispute Mr. Speaker, Sir when the local people claimed that the alignment of the road passed through their sacred forest and the matter has been referred to the court of law and the injunction was issued by the court of law. But the injunction was removed when the road construction has been started.
Mr. Speaker :- It is not a sacred forest.
Shri Rowell Lyngdoh :- With regard to this question No. 4 (b) (i) may I know the amount sanctioned for the current year for construction of this Umpung - Mawpud Road ?
Shri Edwingson Bareh (Minister, P.W.D.) :- There are two sections. The amount for Section I under the current year was only Rs. 25,000. For the second one, detailed estimates have not been completed.
Shri Rowell Lyngdoh :- So we cannot taken for granted that the road is in progress when detailed estimates have not been completed.
Shri Edwingson Bareh (Minister, P.W.D.) :- That is only for Section II. With regard to Section I only the retaining wall and the culvert are left.
Shri K.M. Roy Marbaniang :- In reply to Question No. 4(b) (i) to (iii) may we know the estimate amount for the current year ?
Mr. Speaker :- You mean which current year ?
Shri K.M. Roy Marbaniang :- This year they have not done any work. I mean the year 1977, Sir.
Shri Edwingson Bareh (Minister, P.W.D.) :- The Budget for the current year has not been passed. So we do not know how much we need.
Mr. Speaker :- The Budget estimate is there. The hon. Member may consult it. It has yet to come in the form of demand for grants and this House has the authority either to pass or reject it. So let us pass on the item No. 2. Mr. Rowell Lyngdoh, please.
Shri Rowell Lyngdoh :- Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would like to associate myself with the Motion of Thanks to the Governor's Address moved by the hon. Member, Mr. Reidson Momin on the 21st March, 1977. Sir, when I went through this Address of the Governor, I found this year, as it was in any other year in the past, that the Address speaks more of the achievements of the previous year rather than on the statement of the aims and objects of the Government that are to be implemented during the current year. Therefore, it is rather a dull statement because it only narrated the achievements and successes for which our Government claimed in the previous year - the year under emergency. Sir, in the previous year as it was under the emergency, a lot of new economic programmes were being implemented. It is not in accordance with the wishes of the people of the State, but it was implemented, if I may say so, by the force of the Government. I say this because I know that though the Government claimed that there was much achievements and progress, yet I know that various schemes and projects were successful only in paper and not in actual implementation. Sir, however, I would like surely to thank the Governor for the mention he has made here about the election in para. 3 of page 2 of the Address. Here it is mentioned that the holding of election has been completed recently. Here, of course, we do appreciate the Governor for mentioning about election even though the country was under emergency. But due to the pressure of the people of India, the Government had obliged to hold election and so the President had announced the holding of election. Now we have seen the result of this election and the verdict of the people as a whole. I think the whole country was much enthusiastic on the result of this election.
We have seen also Sir, that the verdict of the people was for true democracy in India as was enunciated by the forefathers who framed the Constitution of India and not for any sort of individual or group dictatorships. So Sir, since we have accepted the verdict of the people we are also glad with the change of Government in the Centre. However in relation to the State of Meghalaya as it is with other sister States in this North East Region, the aspiration of the people right from the beginning was that special protection from the Centre should be given to this part of the country. Therefore, Sir, I would wish that the Government should have made mention in this Address to the effect that the State Government should endeavour to stress the Centre for providing better safeguards to the tribal community of this region. But I am sorry, I do not find any mention anywhere in the Governor's Address regarding this point. Sir, I am coming now to the new economic programmes which we see in para. 4 of the Address. Here again, the Government have claimed that the new economic programmes have generated widespread public enthusiasm. I am inclined to disagree with that, because these new economic programmes are not so much suited to this part of the country. I feel that the people have accepted the programmes grudgingly are not so much enthusiastic because here we do not see so much of people's participation though a number of committees have been constituted and Members have been appointed. But I understand that there is not much consultation with the Members of the Opposition. Therefore these new economic programmes are very much uneconomical in this part of the country. Sir, again in these new economic programmes which we find at para. 7 I have only one thing to say that the Government after seeing the trend of the people in India, have really come down in regard to this family planning programme. They have come down from the stand which they have taken earlier during the period of emergency. Here in this Address the Government have narrated that the Government are not in favour of any coercive measures. Sir, if that is so, I feel that they have really come down because of the pressure and feeling of the people, otherwise they would have done this with coercion. I may cite instances. Of course, I do not remember the date but at Balat and other places coercive measures were restored to, of course, not with guns or lathis but through the allurement of money. That was the thing which they have done there through this family planning programme. Of course, now I am glad and I think we are all glad that the new Government at the Centre have thought it desirable and had announced that compulsory sterilisation will be done away with, once and for all. We welcome such measure though, of course, such family planning should be as we have always discussed before that though there is a need for family planning but the money provided for that programme should be utilised to better the lot of the poor families, specially those economically backward and downtrodden. So in this new economic programme, we find not so much of enthusiasm of the People. In fact, we should rather think that this new economic programme which the Centre enunciated in the previous years and had directed our State to follow, I would suggest that we should have a rethinking on the implementation of these economic programmes. We have other types of economic programmes which are most important and essential to be implemented here in our State. Of course, I agree with afforestation that it is very essential for the State and therefore, the Government should follow up vigorously in implementing these schemes. But in regard to other economic programmes, there are so many things which are not suited to the State of ours. Sir, I would now touch a little on the law and order situation as stated at page 8 of the Address. I would refer only to the raising of the Border Wing Homeguard Battalion in the State. As the Government have pointed out here that they have received the sanction from the Centre to raise this Border Wing Home guard Battalion, I would request the Government that in implementation this scheme, the Government should make recruitment to this Battalion by giving preference to the tribal people of the State, being the sons of the soil. So, Sir, I would stress this point because earlier when we discussed about recruitment to the Police Force, we find that our tribal people were objected to because they are not according to the pattern or standard which the Government have laid down in the rules. But I should say that these rules were borrowed rules framed by the bureaucrats form other States in the country where the people are very tall though of course, are not so sturdy as the people of our State. Sir, so many of our sturdy boys did not get a chance in the Police Force and ay that time till we discussed with the Chief Minister and the Chief Minister assured us that special consideration will be given to our young boys.
So Sir, in the matter of recruitment to this battalion, the standard should be such that it will not be a hindrance or difficult to get recruited in the battalion. So, Sir, I would again request the Government to look into this matter and recruitment should be given to the local boys, and, of course, rules should also be framed according to our standard and not those which have been framed in other States of the country.
Sir, I come to this re-organisation of Administration set up. Here I would only like to point out that in the setting up this Administrative Unit which the Government have inaugurated more than a year ago, we could see from experience that the functions or those new Administrative Units, help nothing in the administration and to the public at large because it is giving rise to a lot of problems rather than solve of the new Administrative Units in certain areas like Khliehriat, Sohra and Mawkyrwat simply duplicate things because the jobs which are to be done direct by the District and Sub-division, are being routed through these Administrative Units. I could see that these Administrative Units are doing nothing new because they have no power to decide and perform their duties independently. So I would request the Government and the present Ministry to reconsider the existence of such administrative unit. So I would request the Government and the present Ministry to reconsider the existence of such administrative unit. So I would suggest that the present administrative units, should be immediately upgraded to Sub-divisions and gives rise to various problems. Therefore, I would suggest to the Government to take note and reconsider abolition of these administrative units. Sir, again on the same object about the headquarters which has been established at Nongstoin of the West Khasi Hills District I would say that the Government should reconsider the question of having the headquarters there and take the views of the leaders of that district also. Sir, I cannot say where it should be, but if it should be at Nongstoin the views of the leaders of that District should be taken into consideration and not to decide things arbitrarily.
Mr. Speaker :- Had the views of some of the members of that district not been taken ?
Shri Rowell Lyngdoh :- It had been expressed in the Motion which has been moved earlier, Sir.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would again come to another point, that is transport and communication. Sir, I know that not so long ago the Transport undertaking, the so-called Assam, Meghalaya Road Transport Corporation was bifurcated and now the M.S.R.T.C. had taken over since those days. Sir, we have been pressing for bifurcation with the hope and expectation that the Corporation will run the transport services very effectively and smoothly that would serve to case the difficulties of the travelling public. But in the last few months Sir, greater problems had arisen worse than earlier when the State Transport had been run by the Government though with limited number of buses, the problems had airmen worse than earlier when the State Transport had been run by the Government though with limited number of buses, the problem vehicles but for so many days they could not place any bus on the road at all. In fact there should be regular buses and the programme was that they should place a regular bus in each line. For example Sir, I think right from 13th or 12th of this month till four to five days there was no vehicles sent to Mawkyrwat being a line which has been taken over, and in other days also there was break-down at 9 A.M. like that. And when they were being asked about this, they expressed their difficulties which I did not understand at all and they said that due to lack of this and that part the vehicles could not be placed on the line and because they did not have any authority to undertake repair of the vehicle without the approval of the General Manager. They even went to the extent of saying that they have no authority even to tie a knot or a bolt. Therefore, Sir, I do not understand this ranking officer of the rank of General Manager. Sir, a lot of vehicles, we have seen near the Anjalee Cinema which are lying there unused, unserviceable. But when asked about this they said they could not do anything without the permission of the General Manager. He did not allow them to purchase spare parts and he did not authorise any of the officers to purchase anything for repairing of those buses.
So it seems that it is not a problem and it is not also an unavoidable problem, but rather a problem of administration as there are so many lapses at the top of the administration. So we suggest that if we are to avoid this problem for the good of the people and also for the convenience of the people and the State Government, this G.M. should be immediately replaced. Some other officer be put there, who can work together with his subordinate staff and run that Corporation effectively. So, Mr. Speaker, Sir, I have also other things, but I expect that other Members will also point out many other matters in this august House and, of course, these are the only point I have to point out here. The Government should look into these matters which we have pointed out and wherever necessary these defects should be rectified or there should be rethinking on the solution of these problems mentioned. With these few words Sir, I resume my seat.
Mr. Speaker :- Mr. Humphrey Hadem.
Shri Humphrey Hadem :- Mr. Speaker, Sir, while supporting the motion of thanks on the Address of the Governor, I would like to make some observations in a very short time. First of all I want to make some observations in a very short time. First of all I want to point out to page 3 of the Governor's Address in Paragraph 6. Sir, apart from what has been stated in this paragraph, I would like to suggest to the Government that the housing loan be extended to the interior parts of the district also. As what we have experienced in the last few years, this benefit has been extended only within the five miles' radius of the district headquarters. Another point Sir, at Page 4 of the Governor's address regarding law and order problem has been mentioned that "the Government have taken adequate measures and it is expected that the situation will remain peaceful all along the border. The Government of India have also conveyed their sanction to raise one Border Wing Home Guards Battalion in the State and recruitment for the purpose has already commenced." Sir, here I would like to give my suggestion that as far as possible our Government should move the Central Government to enlist tribal personnel at least for one battalion. Sir, at Page 7 regarding agricultural development I would like to point out that many things have been done and the programme is being followed for the raising of this water-supply scheme both for the flow irrigation and life irrigation. Sir here, may I suggest to the Government that if possible, a dam may be constructed on the river called Myntang which is just near the village Mynso, where I think a large area of the sloppy land can be irrigated and with this priority it will add some more income to the Government, and it will also increase the production of paddy. Sir, moreover, it will also serve the double purpose, as it can also converted into a small micro-hydro electric project which will also be a great help to the people of this area. At Page 11 Sir, we have found that in that paragraph mention has been made for education, culture and for the promotion of sports. If I am not mistaken, Sir, it has been found that there has been a draw-back in the field of primary education. So I would like to suggest to the Government at last to create some sort of a study team to examine the present condition of primary education and I hope that with the co-operation of the District Council, the Government will be able to improve the standard of education right from the lower primary level. At page 12, which deals with water supply schemes I would like to remind the Government of the long pending scheme in Shangpung which was sanctioned since the composite State of Assam and on many occasion this same question was raises on this very floor of this House and assurance of many time had been made. But nothing has been done uptil now. Sir, during the session of the Presbyterian Synod held at Shangpung temporary water supply has been provided by the Public Health Engineering Department but, after that, it has been left unattended to though the pipes through the village which were these connected are still there but with no water at all. I would therefore, like to request the Government to immediately see that this scheme is implemented. At page 15 of the Governor's Address a reference has been made to the restriction on the sale and consumption of liquor I would like to remind the Government that apart from what the Government have stated on this paragraph, there are many villages which have involved the Government for the shifting of their out-still liquor shops within this village, to some other parts outside the village and I do not know how far the Government have taken action on this matter. But I would like to suggest to the Government that this indicate a good co-operation from the side of the public if the Government would at least acceded to their demand. I have learned in particularly, about one village known as Jalong Mulang, within Jowai Doloi-ship falling also in my constituency that they have moved the Government to remove three out-stills from inside that village to a place outside the village. So, I would like to request the Government to immediately examine the matter and I hope that the Government will be pleases enough to accede to the demand of the villagers. There are some villages also, Sir, where the public have moved the Government for minimising the existing number of out-stills in their villages and I hope that this will atleast give a chance to the Government for taking up necessary steps towards the policy of prohibition I therefore, request the Government to attend to these matters and to see that these types of representations given by the villagers be given due consideration.
On Paragraph 29 of the Governor's Address relating to the benefits to the employees I would like to state apart from what the Government had already taken steps in this particular subject, that there are some cases which deserve special consideration. In this, Sir, I would like to suggest that some of benefits should be given to the over-time worker too. It is learnt that this type of service has been overlooked by the Government. As such, it is high time that consideration should be given to those Government will taken keen consideration of this particular matter as it will help much towards obtaining cooperation of the employees, willing service.
Page 16. Assam Meghalaya Border Sir, I want to stress particularly on the border along the Jaintia Hills District and that of Mikir Hills District. Every now and then, this question has come before the House and steps have also been taken by the Government, but it seems to me, Sir, that the process is very very slow and, as such, chances have been given to those who are eager to encroach towards our State and it was found that, in the Khanduli side in Jaintia Hills, too much, encroachment has been made by our neighbour State. It so occurred even within Mukhroh village of Shilliang Myntang Doloiship such encroachments have also taken place there. So Sir.
Mr. Speaker :- What is the nature of encroachment, whether the people from that area come into the place or whether they removed the boundary pillars ?
Shri Humphrey Hadem :- Boundary pillars have been removed and taken far inside Meghalaya, Sir. Not only that, they have also come without the knowledge of the authorities concerned from this side in connection with criminal cases, coming directly, and arrested the people taking them to Diphu an somewhere and that was done in the sense for claiming that the area belongs to them. If otherwise, the summons or warrants should have been issued through the authorities of our State.
Shri Maham Singh (Minister, Law) :- Mr. Speaker, Sir, which areas ?
Shri Humphrey Hadem :- At Mukroh an incident happened since 1976 and also Khanduli, so many incidents have taken place. They even collected tolls from the bazar.
Mr. Speaker :- In other words, it is only a question of the officials there ignoring the authorities of this State Government?
Shri Humphrey Hadem :- By implication, it seems Sir, that they have also claimed the areas. Otherwise the provision of the laws is that they have to come through the concerned authorities, according to the procedure if the area is not within their jurisdiction. It happened so in Ratta -cherra - between Jaintia Hills and Cachar District. I think such things should not have happened. Last but one Sir, is regarding the programme for the session. It was mentioned that "the Government will place the Budget Estimates and seek a Vote-on-Account pending final consideration and passing of the budget by this august House. Besides the Legislative Assembly of Meghalaya (Members' Salaries and Allowances) (Amendment) Bill 1977 will be introduced during the current session of the Assembly". Sir, it was found that provision was made for the telephone connections as a benefit to the hon. Members of this august House. But I would like to bring to the notice of the Government that it will also be a gesture if the Government will bring forward another amendment providing for pension for the hon. Members as was done in other States.
Mr. Speaker :- Are you thinking of retiring from active politics ?
Shri Humphrey Hadem :- Sir, it may be possible or it may nor be possible, but as some States have made provision for this, I think we may have the same facilities here also. Last but not the least, I would like to turn back to the very first paragraph where it was stated about the sad demise of our beloved President, Shri Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed, of course, this is a very sad thing and that we have already expressed in our obituary reference. But Sir, a sad thing had also happened in this House as one of the hon. Members had died before the Session, it would have been kind enough if something had been mentioned in the Address as the hon. Member had departed in harness. It was also found, Sir, that during the composite State of Assam, one accident happened in the Shillong - Gauhati road when one of the hon. Members of the Legislative Assembly died and as a mark of respect and as a mark of recognition, a half holiday was granted during that time and it so happened that in this present incident, nothing has been done . This is not a very pleasant precedent and I would request the Government to see that in future, something must be done and not to totally ignore the same. With these few words, I resume my seat.
Mr. Speaker :- Dr. D.D. Pugh, or would you like to speak later ?
Shri D.D. Pugh :- Mr. Speaker, Sir, I do not intend to speak.
Mr. Speaker :- Mr. Jackman Marak.
Shri Jackman Marak :- Mr. Speaker Sir, I would also like to associate myself with the hon. Member from Dadengiri who moved the motion of thanks with the hon. Members from Dadengiri who moved the motion of thanks on the 21st March 1977. Sir, at page 2 of the Governor's Address, it was stated about the elections. Here I would like to say that I am very happy and I thank the voters of the Meghalaya State who caste their votes and I believe at that time I was also very happy. In this connection, I would like to mention that this time in the new India and new Government, a new administration will function.
Another point, Sir. This election has been conducted peacefully. But here everybody had experienced that during the course of the election the Election, office had been neglecting the works of the election. Why I say this is because I have seen and the members of the Treasury Bench have also seen that the selection of Polling Stations in villages by the Election office had not been done properly. If you go to the Polling Stations, you will find that the number of villages have been scattered in such a way that the voters of one village had to cross one Polling Station to cast their votes in another Polling Station.
( At this stage, the Speaker left the Chamber and Mr. H. Hadem, Chairman took the Chair). So Mr. Chairman, Sir, I would like to request the Government, through you, to prepare, select Stations properly in the future, otherwise it will not be possible to manage the elections and voters will not come to caste their votes.
Mr. Chairman, Sir, regarding law and order, I would like to mention a few words specially in the border areas. The Government is certainly taking care but every now and then the higher authority is not able to check everyday on what is going on in the border areas. I know this because I am one of the Members representing the border areas and I know very well. So Sir, in 1975 itself the Police out-post should have had to be created. I suggest that this outpost at Sibbari. It is in the extreme border of the border area. The selection of the site has been included in the import of the office in-charge of the Police Station last year. But what kind of action has been taken uptil now ? I have not seen. From the security point of view on this border area, this Police out-post should be created immediately. So Sir, I request the Government, through you, to look into this matter.
Regarding re-organisation of administrative set up, I am very glad while going through this Governor's Address that in Garo Hills there are two districts. Mr. Chairman, Sir, I would like to know from the Government whether there is West Garo Hills district and East Garo Hills district. In the West Garo Hills district there is an Autonomous Garo Hills district Council. Will it be possible that there will be an Autonomous district Council in the East Garo Hills district also ? Sir, it will be proper if the Government set up this Autonomous district Council for the East Garo Hills district also. So, how far Government has taken action in this respect, I would like to know.
Mr. Chairman, Sir, I now come to Community Development. This is also one of the agencies of the Government and I also like this programme and many other works which had been entrusted to this agency. But since 1974-75 Government has been appointing Chairman of the Blocks. So far, the Chairman of the Blocks had been working properly. Mr. Chairman, Sir, sometimes without checking the reports of the public, Government changed their Chairman. I specially like to mention here about the Chockpot Block. I have seen since last year, the Chairman of the Block is at Tura, whereas his Block is situated at Chockpot.
Nobody can say whether he is going to the office or sitting tight at home, but many times, the public have made complaints against him. How far Government has taken action in this respect. So Mr. Chairman, Sir, I would request the Government, through you, to kindly look into the matter.
Regarding Transport, as one of the hon. Members has mentioned now, I am very sorry to mention, Sir, that very few buses are plying in Garo Hills. As far as I know, there are only 10 buses. But some of these buses are not in running condition. There are about 2 or 3 buses lying unrepaired near the State Transport Office. There are two timings for the State Transport buses from Tura to Baghmara, Tura to Rongra, one in the morning and one in the evening. These buses do not run regularly according to the time schedule. I want to know from the Government the actual state of affairs, because people are made to wait in the station for the first bus. But after 3 to 4 hours, the passengers were informed that the first bus will not go, and so people have to go by the second bus much to their inconvenience. Sir, in this way, such inconveniences are caused to the public. I would request the Government, through you, Sir, to kindly look into the matter.
I come to Health and Water Supply. Last year I was very happy when I saw the location of water supply scheme. In the month of October, 1976, we met the Expert Committee which came form Delhi and discussed with them about the scheme. At that time, I suggested three places for water supply scheme. At that time, I suggested three places for water supply scheme Moreover, the Chief Public Health Engineer also assured to inform me before the end of 1976, but up till now, nothing has been informed. Even then, I am very happy to met him again. The location of water supply schemes at Mitadgiri, Erenggiri and Chockpot is not feasible. Even the Ministers have visited these places many times and during the last Election, they have seen that there is no water in these places. The Darenggiri Water Supply Scheme is not suitable for the people. Moreover, Mr. Chairman, Sir, I would like to mention about the Tura Water Supply Scheme. Why is it not sufficient and everywhere there is leakage ? I would like to know how many lakhs of rupees have been spent, because in Tura bazar, there is no water during this time of the year and I think in Chandmari side also there is no water. So, Sir, as Tura is the headquarter of Garo Hills, I would suggest that water supply should be improved. Sometimes we could not taken bath for two to three days because there is no water.
Now, I come to development of Border Areas. I am very glad to see in the address that development is going on in the border areas. During the recent elections, our Chief Minister went to Baghmara along the borders. Except road development and so on. In respect of education, there are one or two M.E. Schools in the borders, and what action Government has taken in this behalf. In the Address, it was mentioned that grants-in-aid will be given to educational institutions located in the border areas for construction of hostels. I would like to know how many hostel buildings have been improved or how many new hostel buildings have been constructed. Mr. Chairman, Sir, there are many hostels which need improvement. I request the Government, through you, Sir, to kindly look into the matter. Mr. Chairman, Sir, I would like to say a few words in respect of the District Councils. In our Meghalaya State, there are three District Councils. I will mention here the normal tenure of the existing District Councils of Garo Hills and Khasi Hills. Mr. Chairman, Sir, Why the District Councils of our State are getting money very late ? I am very happy this time because before the Lok Sabha election all pay of the teachers and also their D.As and T.As have been given immediately. I will not explain this.
( A Voice :- why ? ) ( Laughter )
I know the policy of arrear pay. There is a teachers' constitution policy. ( A Voice - What is that ? ). If the Government do not sanction immediately our arrear pay, there will be no way for the Government because of the General Election of our State Assembly will be coming very shortly. ( A Voice - Then ) ? So, I would like again to request the Government to sanction the arrear pay of the teachers and the teachers will be very happy. So, Sir, some of them are still not getting and therefore, before the coming of the General Election, to-day or tomorrow, the Government should sanction. ( Laughter ).
Mr. Chairman, Sir, before polling, this arrear pay has been sanctioned immediately, so this time also Government may do the same. (Laughter).
( A Voice - We will do that.)
Mr. Chairman, Sir, about the supply position, I am very glad to say that the Supply Department has supplied all the essential commodities district wise. But unfortunately, I have seen the supply of essential commodities in the Garo Hills. The rise position and other essential commodities position is not good. Why ? Because though the Government is properly supplying all essential commodities in the districts but all of us know that the Fair Price Shop dealers do not supply the essential commodities properly, through their respective headquarters. I would like to mention here, Sir, that last year one dealer has been reported by one of my friends to the Deputy Commissioner. But the Deputy Commissioner did not take any action. This dealer is very proud and he did not care even for the M.L.A. or M.D.C. and even the Deputy Commissioner. Can you challenge like this ? He sold all the essential commodities to the border areas of what he received from the Supply Office at Tura. Sir, I would like to request the Government through you, Sir, to look into the matter.
Regarding Forest Department, Mr. Chairman, Sir, this Forest Department in our Meghalaya State is beautified by the trees, bamboos and what not. But our people are not taking care to preserve the trees. Why our people are not taking care to preserve these forests, is because due to lack of instructions to the people. Sir, here I would like to say that in the hill areas specially unless and until we preserve the trees on the banks of the streams where the Government makes those big water supply schemes, after some years, our streams will be dried up. So Sir, through the District Councils, our Meghalaya Government should issue proper instructions to preserve the trees along the bank of small streams and to preserve our Forest resources.
Lastly, Sir, I come to Fishery. Mr. Chairman, Sir, the people of the border areas, many of them have constructed fishery tanks. But Sir, I am sorry to inform this august House that during the last two years, not even a single officer is going to check those fishery tanks in the villages. One man made a fishery tank last year and he received only Rs. 18.00 as grant from the Department. Is it possible to make one fishery tank with this amount of Rs. 18.00 ? Unless the Government sanctions 2,000 or 3,000 rupees for one individual the very purpose of this scheme is defeated and no tank could be constructed properly. So, Sir, I feel that Government should look into these things properly and I would request the Government, through you, Sir, to look into the matter and give due consideration to the suggestion given by me. With these words, Sir, I resume my seat.
Shri Samarendra Sangma :- Mr. Chairman, Sir, I also rise to support the motion of Thanks on the Governor's Address and I would confined my deliberations to some points only which relate to my area. Mr. Chairman, Sir, at page 10, para 13 of the Governor's Address, there was a mention in respect of Transport and Communication. It is a gratification to me that the Central Government and the Planning Commission have agreed to give us greater and increased allocation of funds for the next year. Here, I want to draw the attention of the Government to the condition of the road from Garoduba Mahendraganj. Mr. Chairman, Sir, it is very much regrettable that though the Department has taken up the work on the said road year after year, many bridges and culverts are in a very much deplorable condition and as the rainy season is approaching, I feel that this road communication from Garoduba to Mahendraganj will be very much disturbed. I also invite the attention of our Minister to look into the affairs of the said road so that he will be in a position to take necessary improvements so that he may have a personal idea regarding the condition of the road.
Secondly, Sir, I want to draw the attention of the Government in respect of the road which runs from Ampati to Purakhasia via Salmanpara, the road which has been constructed by the department since five or sic years and which was not completed till now. It was given to understand during the last March or April 1976 that the said road which I have mentioned now, will be opened for public vehicles. But up till now, this could not be done. So, Sir, I would request the Government to see that the said road from Ampathi to Purakhasia via Salmanpara is immediate opened up for public vehicles. Thirdly, trade and business from very important daily activities of the tribal people. And the major part of West Garo Hills District entirely depends on Manachar and Dhubri for trade and business between our area and the Assam's areas which is being conducted through this road from Singgimari to Mahendraganj. The portion from Janajana stream upto Singgimari, the whole area falls within Assam. The Portion from the Janajana Stream towards Mahendraganj is within Meghalaya State. I propose that this road from Singgimari via Mankachar, Kakripara, Kalaichar to Mahendraganj be taken up by the N.E.C. so that due consideration for construction of this road and necessary funds may be given. This is the most important and in our borer area and the improvement of this road will very much help the most populated areas of Garo Hills. At Page 13, para 24 mention has been made in respect of Border Areas Development. For the development of border areas, the Government is taking up so many schemes like building up of schools and hostels, irrigation and so on and so forth. In this context, I only want to urge upon the Government that the whole grant which is primarily meant for the border areas for school building or for hostels, that amount of grant should not be given to other schools that do not fall within the border areas. I feel that if this amount which is exclusively meant for the border areas is given to other schools which is not situated in the border areas, there will naturally, be repercussions in the minds of the border people and I also want to stress on the point that while the Government makes some financial assistance the needy schools have a hostels building or a school building, some one or two years later, get grants for hotel or school buildings. My point is that, while making any grants for hostel or school building in the border areas, priority school be given to the needy schools which are maintained by the poor villagers, especially these schools facing financial crises. In my area, at Salmanpara, the hills people, though poor have started one M.E. School. I think it has been running for the last one year or so. The nearest M.E. School from Salmanpara is Ampathi which is at a distance of about 8 or 9 miles and, on the other sides even up to 20 or 30 miles, there is not even a single M.E. School. What I meant to urge upon the Government is that some amounts should be given to this Salmanpara M.E. School and also other M.E. Schoola in areas like Kaliapara and Kawahagra, Gobinathkilla. There are some high schools also which are maintain by the villages like Nagarpara and Boldamgiri assistance be also given to these High Schools. And then Mr. Chairman, Sir, I want to draw the attention of the Government to a fact that during last year or at the beginning of this year, some villagers from Gajengpara, Bakdagiri and Marengpara - these villages being in the border areas had to leave their villages by migrating to some other areas leaving their homesteads and all the cultivable lands. They have applied for help from the Government. So far I know some enquiries have also been made by the Government regarding their cases; and these people are very much expecting that some financial help would be given to them. But, uptil now, no such help was given to them. So, Sir, I would request the Government to see that some financial help be given to these people. So far as I know there are about 15 to 20 families who have shifted to other areas.
Regarding the irrigation project at Rongkai near Nagarpara there is a rivulvet named Rongkai under the Zigzag Block. That Rongakai rivulvet irrigation scheme had been included in the Fifth Five Year Plan. This is the only irrigation project under the Zigzag Block. But so far as I know, no survey work has yet been taken up. So I would request the Government to see that regular survey in respect of Rongkai rivulet is carried out and actually this scheme will benefit several thousand acres of cultivable land. This will fortify the irrigation system there and will also help to grow paddy twice or even thrice a year. I think the land will not be less than 2000 to 4000 acres.
The coming to the Baldenggiri Pucca Bund I would like to say that I have from time to time moved the Government to strengthen the extension wall so that it will be a boon to some areas. Previously, when the extension wall was in tact, it was giving much benefit to the people. But the extension wall, after some years, was broken and so there was no more water for irrigation. Once again I would request the Government to look into this matter. The extension wall will cost Rs. 5000 to Rs. 9000 at the most.
During the last session, I mentioned about some link roads from Baldakgiri to Bhoiragupi via Rangkaigiri and then another road connectind Katuli Har with Zigzag Block via Damiliguri, Aringpara, etc. So far as I understand, according to the instruction of the Government, the survey work has already been done by the P.W.D. and so I would request the Government to accord necessary funds so that these two link roads in the border areas can be constructed.
At page 2, para 3, mention has been made with regard to election. Regarding the election, Mr. Chairman, Sir, I would like to confine my view point. (At this stage, Mr. H. Hadem left the Chamber and Mr. Reidson Momin Chairman, took the chair) to the selection of polling stations. As mentioned by previous speakers, I also know that there were 18 miles from the village and the voters have to cast their votes. Some of the villages are Tarapara, Shilghaguri and Malmoa, the villagers of which have to cover a distance of about 18 miles, as Noski being their polling station.
So we can understand how it was impossible for those villagers to go there and back to their village in a day. What I want to suggest is that the polling stations should be arranged in such a way that the voters can easily reach them and that the distance also should be only three or four miles away from the villages at the maximum. The lesser the distance, the greater the benefit for the voters. Sir, in my own constituency also there are some places where the voters have to go about six to seven miles' distance from their villagers. What I would like to suggest to the Government is to see that in future, polling stations in the whole State, should be so arranged as to enable the voters to go there to east their votes. So I would suggest that in my areas i.e. in Laskar area II-19, one more polling stations should be given at Anapara village and also at L. area II-22 at Kawahagra and at L. area II.23 at Garagiri. This will include four polling stations in each Lasker area and this will be in accordance with the proposal of the village elders of my constituency. I hope this will cover all the villages and the distance will be only three or four miles away from the polling station. Therefore; once again I would request the Government and the authority concerned to kindly see that in future one more polling station be given in each laskar area in my constituency With these few words, I resume my seat.
Mr. Chairman :- Prof A. Warjri now.
Prof. Alexander Warjri :- Mr. Chairman, Sir, I too would like to participate in the discussion on the Motion of thanks to the Governor's Address. First of all, I feel it my duty to join hands with the hon. Member from Mynso, Mr. Humphrey Hadem in expressing my disappointment for the failure on the part of the Governor to mention about the death of one hon. Member of this august House who had passed away lately. There was nothing mentioned in the Governor's Address about this. So I feel that this House owes an explanation and that explanation is due from the Government for this negligence. Now Sir, I would like to take up one by one those points given in the Governor's Address. First of all, as stated here the programme that places adequate emphasis in enlarging employment opportunities by apprenticeships, helping the artisans and the poor benefits to the students and so on. It is true that these things have been done. But I would like to know from the Government what was the success of all these. Whether there have been any improvements in this apprenticeship scheme. I know that some apprentices have been placed in certain offices to learn accounts, to learn clerical works etc. I have met a number of them and they were not sure whether they would be offered jobs or not. So I feel that this scheme would be useless these apprentices are being guaranteed with certain jobs in Government offices suitable for their respective trade for which they have learnt. I have met a few officers who would not like to part with those apprentices whom they themselves had taught. Therefore, I would urge upon the Government to look into this matter. Now, Sir, regarding those poor weavers who have been helped by supplying cost-free and subsidised yarn, I would like to know to what extent the improvement has been made in this particular line. Some of those weavers, some of those artisans, have instead of continuing with their own trade for which they have been trained have asked me to help them to secure peon jobs in offices. So I think this scheme is a failure in itself. Then with regard to students. It is already a year now since the imposition of the emergency that many things have been promised to students like providing books and book banks and so on and so forth. This was the case even with student in various schools and colleges. But Sir, the manner in which these cases where some students were given in so cumbrous that even there were cases where some students were given books with a warning that they should not make them dirty and that they should return. Most of these books are bazar notes and many students found that they could not maintain them properly as they could do with properly bound books. The rules governing the supply of those books were also such that even Principals and Headmasters found it difficult to follow them. Therefore, I would like to request the Government to look into this matter carefully. And then what touches me most is to find a number of Garos students and students from Jaintia Hills as well as students from the rural areas of Khasi Hills who lodge themselves in slums and houses wherever available for lack of hostel facilities. Once I have moved the Government for construction of hostels for the poorer section of the students. Most of these students cannot afford to live in hostels in which they have to pay Rs. 100 to Rs. 120 p.m. Therefore, Sir, I would urge upon the Government to construct certain hostels in which students themselves can look after their own food arrangements and can live according to their means. I think such hostels should immediately be constructed. There is of course a tribal hostel but this hostel cannot accommodate all students. So we find a number of young boys and girls both school and college students are just sheltering here and there and it is very difficult for them to get facilities what the students in the recognised hostels get. While in recognised hostels students get all facilities of the ration etc. those living in private houses find it difficult for them to get ration etc. I would therefore urge upon the Government to look into the condition of these students of colleges and schools from Garo Hills, Khasi Hills and Jaintia Hills and also from the rural areas who have conglomerated themselves themselves here at Shillong. Then here there is a mention of 10 Housing Co-operative. I would like to know from the Government since when this Housing Co-operative scheme has started to function and, if so, whether they have been functioning and what is the progress they have made so far and whether all these 10 Housing Co-operatives are in any area of Khasi Hills and Jaintia Hills and whether they are meant only for urban areas or also for the rural areas.
Then we come to Family Planning. I appreciate very much this idea given by the Government here in this Governor's Address. While appreciating the efforts of limiting the size of the family and providing for the welfare of children and women, the Government are in favour of the voluntary participation of the people in the programme Mr. Chairman, Sir, I would differ from the Government in this, regarding the need of limiting the size of the families. While in the plains of Assam and in the rest of India the population is between 262 and 400 per sq. k.m., in our State it is only 42 per square k.m. And if we are to believe what the demographers had stated that our Khasi population within 20 years will disappear, I think Government should appreciate not the need for limiting the families but should appreciate the need for increased families and to help for the welfare of these families. And I would also like to draw the attention of Government to one circular of the Government from the Under Secretary, Health, to the Government of Meghalaya. I would also like to know whether this order has been removed. Here I shall read it.
I am directed to say that in view of the high Family Planning targets allotted by the Government of India for our State this year (1976-77), it has been decided to fix the annual targets for every medical and para-medical staff as follows : Assistant Surgeon I & II 100 sterilisation I. U.D. 50, C.C. Users - 50. Assistant Surgeon I of Urban Family Welfare Planning Centres - 150 targets for sterilisation, I. U.D. 80 and C. C. Users - 50. Assistant Surgeon P.H. Duty, Mobile Dispensaries - 50, I. U.D. 25 and C.C. Users - 50. Assistant Surgeon - I of Mobile Family Planning, sterilisation - 300, I. U.D. - 100 Assistant Surgeon - I of First M.L.P., BN. Hospital, sterilisation - 50, I. U.D. - 20, C.C. Users - 30. District Surgeon, Specialist in General Surgery cum Plastic Surgery sterilisation - 50, I. U.D. - 25 and C.C. Users - 50.
This order even covers the Block Development Educators. Targets have also been fixed for the poor malaria Inspector and Worker and even the Eye Specialist will have to get sterilisation - 100 I. U.D. - 50 and C.C. Users - 50. Mr. Chairman, Sir, I hope the Government has already removed this obnoxious order which is imposed upon doctors. Doctors have been directed that if those who failed to achieve the prescribed targets they may be asked to furnish explanations and if necessary departmental proceedings may be initiated against them. Every para-medical staff should be directed to make ever possible effort in achieving the prescribed number of Motivation targets allotted for them. Achievement of 80 per cent to 89 per cent may be counted as poor performance and will also be reflected as such in their confidential reports. Those achieving below 80 per cent of their targets may be asked to explain reason for such low performance with a view to stop their increments or withhold crossing their Efficiency Bar, if due.
Mr. Chairman, Sir, I have, however, believed, due to the statement in the Governor's Address that Government have already taken steps for removal of this order because if this order remains in force then this statement on the part of the Government that Government believed in voluntary participation of the people in the programme, is false in the sense that those Doctors have been asked and order to implement the programme and they have no other alternative. More or less they are being forced to follow the order otherwise their jobs would be hampered. So, I would request the Government that such order should be withdrawn immediately and the Government will act according to the statement made in the Governor's Address.
Shri Francis Mawlot (Minister of State, Transport etc.) :- What is the date of the order ?
Prof A. Warjri :- The date was 11th October, 1976. Then Sir, regarding law and order it is stated that the Government have also released all the political detenus except a number of banned organisation. But Sir, after receiving the orders from the Government of India, even those detenus bonded organisation were also to be released immediately. Then Sir, I would like to mention a little about the people who are the agencies for the maintenance of law and order situation i.e. the police. Here I do not want to condemn the police but rather I would like to request the Government to look into the conditions of the police, especially as regards the housing problem of the police. Fortunately or unfortunately, the police reserve falls within my constituency, where I have been a constant visitor to that part of my constituency, I have found that living in, is not enviable. I, therefore, would like to urge upon the Government to taken necessary steps in order to improve the housing conditions of these police people.
Then I come to the improvement of administrative machinery. It is true that during these past days Government had suspended quite a good number of officers who have been alleged to be corrupt and therefore they have been suspended pending enquiries. But now it is already one year passed and the Government have taken no action so far to decide their cases and those poor people are now without jobs. So I request that the Government should taken a decision regarding those matter regarding the charges made against them so that those people would know where they are, and can settle in their lives - whether they should go back to the offices where they have been posted or whether they should be dismissed from office.
Then on the control of jhum and shifting cultivation, Mr. Chairman. Sir, here I would like to mention that in Garo Hills I have seen quite a lot, specially near Tura Sir, that Government have done for resettlement of a number of those jhum cultivators. But what pains me more is that while visiting those people who have been given four acres of land each. I find that the men folks were not there when we visited that area because they had finished the cultivations of those four acres of land. There were only women and children. It was learned that those men had gone somewhere else for jhuming. So the ides to prevent jhuming by those people has been defeated. They thus got double crop there. And at the same time when they have finished the cultivation, they went for jhuming somewhere else and that is what we were told. Secondly, I think in the allocation of site for jhuming, I do not remember the name of the village, it is somewhere below Tura Peak and a little further from Tura. There is no communication at all to the village. The poor man in order to buy a match-box has to go through the forested land which is the short-cut and the road itself is so dangerous and long even for a jeep to ply there. There is no road link as such though it is only about two miles from the main Tura town. So, the Government should look into this matter before they select a site. And that the road communication for such a place should be well planned. I would, therefore, urge upon the Government or rather suggest to the Government that before the regrouping of villages, Government should see to communication water supply, food etc. for the area concerned. I would suggest that, to begin with Government choose places near the road and later on it may be extended with the expansion of the road to other areas. But one thing I would also like to ask the Government that since it has been put in the Governor's Address that a special programme in the State has been taken up to improve 42 per cent of the tribal population, who are dependent on shifting cultivation, if in this 42 per cent are also included the people of Khasi and Jaintia hills. I would like to know this from the Government. Then while coming to co-operative societies and community development here it is stated that State co-operative and consumers marketing Societies extend their activities further for the consumers. Mr. Chairman, Sir, I would like to call the attention of the Government to the last three or four issues of the Meghalaya Gazette in which two or three pages have been allotted to the Registrar of the Co-operative Societies in which existing co-operative societies in Khasi Hills and Garo Hills have been wound up, and a number of them. I do not remember the exact number. I mean, so many of them have been wound up. I feel that the co-operative societies have not been a success in Khasi Hills as well as in Garo Hills. I therefore, would like to urge upon the Government that a proper investigation should be made on this matter as to why these societies have failed. If these societies, after getting the loan money from the Apex Bank or any other organisation are not using the money for the purpose given to them, then I think that co-operative movement in the State should be considered as a thing of the past and those schemes should no longer be implemented here in Meghalaya. Because, from the number of societies that have been wound up, it shows that this co-operative movement has not been a success in Meghalaya. Then in industries and mineral resources, I have only this remark to make i.e, the dander of over enthusiasm in industrialisation. I think that the Government should move slowly in this regard. It is dangerous now to have industrialisation in which there may be influx from other States. Our people are not yet become industrial-mended. I, myself, have experienced in sending certain young people to Byrnihat as supervisors, but none of them could stick there. Our people have not yet become industrial-minded. At present, we can count there in Burnihat how many of our people are working there. Only very few of them. People who work there are from outside. I must say that the greater number the industries the more will be the influx from outside. The bulk of the population in the industrial areas should be from our own State, but our people as I have said, are not yet industrial-minded and therefore, it takes time for them to be educated to become industrial-minded. Therefore, I urge upon the Government to go slow in bringing big industries to this State.
Then we come to transport and communication. Here I would like only to get a reply from the Government whether it is a fact that Government is considering to allow a certain transport corporation know as the A.T.C., i.e. Air Transport Corporation to run almost parallel with our own Transport, the Meghalaya State Transport Corporation on the G.S. Road. If this is true, I would advise the Government to revise the decision and rather give to our own Meghalayans, to our own tribals, the first preference to run along with our own Meghalaya State Transport Corporation in the matter of carrying goods and passengers from Gauhati to Shillong and from Shillong to Gauhati. I also understand that the monopoly of carrying cement from Mawmluh to Gauhati has been given to this very same A.T.C. and that a group of tribal truck owners who had formed their own association amongst themselves and who have up till now been carrying cement from Mawmluh to Gauhati will no longer be able to carry cement from Mawmluh to Gauhati as this has been given to the Air Transport Corporation. If this is so, I do not understand why this Air Transport Corporation should be the blue eyed boy of the Government and why such special treatment be given to this single Corporation. Government will remember that quite a number of this group of tribal truck owners whom the Government had helped to get their trucks through the programme know as the Half a Million Job Programme. A number of young men have been helped during the last few years to get trucks to run their business and some of them, rather quite a number of them have been allowed to carry cement from Mawmluh to Gauhati, and if these are not given help by the Government, and if these young business-men whom the Government had been kind enough to help in the years past in getting these trucks, unless Government comes forward to help them to give them permit to carry cement from Mawmluh to Gauhati and also to carry goods from Gauhati to Shillong, I do not know how these young people, these young business-men can repay the loans that they have taken from the Banks.
Then I am happy to note that the Government have done their job regarding the revised pay-scale to college teachers. The recommendations of the University Grants Commission for improvement of the scale of pay of teachers have been accepted and the revised scale are being implemented. As far as I know this has been done for college teachers only as far as the revised scale is concerned but there are certain things which the Government has not done. It was not a complete fulfillment of the commitments made by the Government to the teachers. Last year or the year before last, there were at least 3 or 4 commitments made by the Government. No.1, that the scale should be made effective from 1st January 1973 and yet this scale was not sanction from that date; it was given only from 1975. That was a commitment made by the Government to the Meghalaya College Teachers Association. There was a commitment of the Government that gratuity also should be granted, but now it has been withdrawn. The third commitment was that the Government would enhance the contributory provident fund from 6 per cent to 10 per cent. But these things have not been fulfilled by the Government. Another thing that I would like the Government to do is to take into consideration the case of the teaching staff who belong to this senior group I would like the Government to consider the fact that a teacher who had been teaching for 10 years in the college is at present drawing the same salary with the teacher who had just joined, most probably his old student. What is the status given to these senior teachers. I think there should be some other method or some other way by which Government should invent in order to give some benefits to the senior teachers. Of course, I do not say that there should be a total benefit, but at least there should be some benefit to the senior teachers who have devoted most of their lives to teaching. They should be rewarded at least for the years they had been in the teaching lane. I would urge upon the Government to consider this aspect also. An idea was given to the Government some time back that evening classes should be stopped, and there should be evening colleges with completely separate staff, that in Shillong there should be at least one evening college for boys and one evening college for girls. That was welcomed by the teachers but they would lose certain allowances. Even this was welcomed by the college teachers. But now the Government cannot implement this proposal to have an evening college for boys and an evening college for girl students. So these very same day colleges are to function as before, as evening colleges, but they were to do the same duty and they have to teach the same syllabus. They have to complete the same syllabus as they have to complete in the morning shift. While in the morning shift it is their real job, they get Rs. 700/- as basic pay. In the evening they go to classes after a tiresome day and a pay of Rs. 100/- is given to them. I would suggest to the Government that at least half of the basic pay should be given as night shift allowance, that is, Rs. 350/- or Rs. 300/- be given to these teachers who take up this teaching in the evening section in the same college.
I also congratulate the Government for considering the plight of the 3rd grade staff of the deficit colleges. But one thing that is remaining undone is that certain groups of the deficit colleges, that is the 4th grade staff in the colleges. I do not know what fault they have done. Uptil now nothing has been paid and their number is not great. I have counted the number of the 4th grade staff in our deficit colleges. Here in Meghalaya alone their number does not even exceed 40. Just imagine the peon who has got at present Rs. 190/- as his basic pay and that everything a peon gets is more than Rs. 200/- and the pay of a clerk is less than that of the peon. This is the condition of the 4th grade employee in the deficit colleges as it stands at present. Therefore, I would urge upon the Government to immediately take up this matter and revise the pay scales of the 4th grade staff in the deficit colleges with their arrears.
Lastly, while dealing with education, I would like to point out to the Government a part of the budget which had been passed for 1976-77, Volume II. There is one particular item, the assistance which has been written as "assistance to the Don Bosco School as grant-in-aid of Rs. 80,000/-". I would like to remind the Chief Minister who is also the Minister-in-charge of Finance to look into this. Why when sanction had been made, uptil now nothing has been done. I went to the Education Department.
Shri W.A. Sangma (Chief Minister) :- That is not a sanction.
Shri E. Bareh (Minister, Agriculture) :- That is only a provisional fund.
Prof. Alexander Warjri :- Most of these had been sanctioned. I do not know why only this sanction had not been made. I have asked the Education Department they said because Don Bosco Technical School falls number under Labour Department. If it is so, then it should be for the next year. But for this year, let it stand as it is and let this sanction be given to the Don Bosco School because I know the School needs this aid.
Coming to health and water supply, first of all, I am very happy that the Government had atleast done something for the expansion of the Ganesh Das Hospital and it has really served the people of this area, especially for the mothers who are delivering their children and which has caused or rather solved the accommodation problem in that hospital. But I think that the strength as mentioned a "bed strength of the Civil Hospital and Ganesh Das Hospital has been increased". I think this is not true that the number has been increased. Uptil now nothing has been done for the requirements of the Civil Hospital, namely, to expand the bed strength in the Civil Hospital, Shillong. I would urge upon the Government that a new Wing be immediately constructed in the Civil Hospital, Shillong. And I do not know whether it is true that there are certain people who have offered donation for the building of a Childrens' Ward for the Civil Hospital and yet the Government has refused.
Then another thing I would like to remark about the Civil Hospital. This is that as we are all aware the civil Hospital is situated nearer to the Lady Hydari Park. Recently, I have been a patient and I have noticed certain kinds of flies coming into the hospital and I am told that these flies have increased lately due to the keeping of a Mini Zoo in that Lady Hydari Park. Those animals that have been kept there have caused the multiplication of these flies which breed in the dung dropped by these flies, they increased in number and at night they were attracted by the lights of the Civil Hospital and they come to the Civil Hospital. I think it would be dangerous to the patients and also to the food that is being served in that Hospital. Therefore, I would urge upon the Government that this Mini Zoo be removed somewhere else as to remove the Civil Hospital, is impossible. The Mini Zoo itself is an inconvenience not only to the Civil Hospital but also to the Pine Mount School which is close by.
The here also there is a mention about the number of P.H.C. I is expected that all Blocks will be covered by Public Health Centre by the end of the Fifth Five-Year Plan. For this I congratulate the Government but with some reservation in that the P.H.Cs should not be constructed for the sake of construction or to follow the rules that every Block should have them. Rather, I would say, let the Blocks have even two PHCs. Now, for example, we have one beautiful P.H.C. at Pomlum. Therefore are buses going up and down and so the people would rather prefer to go to the Civil Hospital than go to that P.H.C. Regarding the P.H.C. at Mawrynkneng, the people would rather prefer to go to Shillong or Jowai where they can get better medical facilities. Rather this P.H.C. should be removed somewhere else in the interior where people would be more benefited. I would, therefore, urge upon the Government to make use of these for some other purposes.
Regarding water supply, Sir, though I would like to express my gratitude to the Government for their services rendered to my constituency in the years past by giving extra tanks at Mawkhar, yet these tanks are empty tanks. There is no water at all in those tanks. I met the Chief Executive Officer of the Shillong Municipality and he told me that he had moved the P.H.E. Department to agree to a certain plan or scheme to draw water from Lawsohtun straight to Mawkhar. But due to some technical difficulties because they could not measure the land upon the Government to take up this work immediately and that the P.H.E. be directed to send to the Chief Executive Officer the sanction so that the people in Mawkhar would have enough water for drinking and for other purposes.
Then coming to tourism, I would like to know only this fact, Mr. Speaker, Sir. As rumours go that since Government has set up the Meghalaya Tourism Development Corporation, the Government intends to do away with the Directorate of Tourism and if it is so, I tends to do away with the Directorate of Tourism and if it is so, I think it would be foolish on the part of the Government because this Meghalaya Tourism Development Corporation will not be dealing with the Government of India, for example, but will be dealing only with business. Therefore, nobody will recognise the Chairman or the Secretary of the Corporation, but people will recognise the Secretary or Director of Tourism Department. Therefore, I would urge upon the Government not to do away with this Department.
Mr. Speaker :- How is it possible to abolish the department ?
Prof A. Warjri :- I have mentioned earlier that it is a rumour.
Coming to District Councils, it is mentioned in the Address "in accordance with the policy of the Government to attach due importance to the functioning of the District Councils, assistance is being extended to the Councils for enabling them to discharge their functions." I think that Government by saying that assistance be extended to the District Councils is in the form of finance. Not only finance has been given to the District Councils but even officers have also been given to the District Councils to help them. But I would like to suggest to Government that assistance also should be in other ways like checking how the District Councils spend the money. I do not know how the District Councils spent their money. Whether Government had any part to investigate or audit the District Councils' money that had been sanctioned to them. For example, whether the money sanctioned for the teachers in the schools had been properly utilised or not, whether the money sanctioned for roads had been properly utilised or not and so on. This would be of greater assistance than by giving more and more money. Therefore, Government should satisfy itself that the money sanctioned to the District Council should be properly utilised.
Then coming to task force, Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would like to mention here that we have the Committee on Subordinate Legislation and this Committee has presented its report and has pointed out that Government should immediately take up the regularisation of the force. But up till now, the Governor has not, by a notification, notified the date of commencement of the Civil Task Force Act which has already been passed. This is a very serious matter and, therefore, Government should take up at once to regularise what have been done by the task force.
Then coming to the last point, Sir, and that is restriction on the sale and consumption of liquor. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would like to mention here about the regulation which I have been keeping on stating while I was on the other side that Government should see that bars should be removed immediately from Laitumkhrah because it is a place where educational institutions are located. It is very dangerous for our students and therefore, I have urges again and again upon the Government that these bars be shifted somewhere else so that there will be no danger for our young boys and girls who attend schools as the majority of them are located at Laitumkhrah. With these few words. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would like to urge upon the Government to take this matter up seriously. I know that there is very little time. The Assembly election is coming soon. But there is still a few days and months for the Government to do these things especially those vital things that are important for the welfare of the people. With these few words, Sir, I resume my seat.
Announcement of the Election to Legislature Committee.
Mr. Speaker :- Is there any other hon. Member who would like to participate. Before the House stands adjourned, I have one announcement to make. I am now to inform the House that eight valid nominations were received in favour of the following 8 (eight) members to constitute the Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Tribes, Scheduled Castes and Other Backward Classes for the term beginning from the 7th April, 1977 -
Shri Manindra Rava.
Shri Humphrey Hadem.
Shri Sibendra Narayan Koch.
Shri Jagabandhu Barman.
Shrimati Percylina Marak.
Shri Galynstone Laloo.
Shri Jackman Marak.
Shri Y. Fuller Lyngdoh.
Since the number of candidates is equal to the number of seats to be filled, all the 8 (eight) members are declared elected to the Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Tribes, Scheduled Castes and other Backward Classes.
The House stands adjourned till 9.30 a.m on Thursday the 31st March, 1977.
The 30th March, 1977.
Meghalaya Legislative Assembly.