Governor Address - 1993
ADDRESS BY HIS EXCELLENCY, THE GOVERNOR OF MANIPUR, SHRI CHINTAMANI PANIGRAHI TO THE MANIPUR LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY ON 12.3.1993
Mr. Speaker and Hon'ble Members,
It is my pleasure and privilege to welcome all of you to the First Session of this august House this year. I take this opportunity to wish you and the people of the State a happy and prosperous year ahead.
2. In my last address, I had mentioned the severe unprecedented financial crisis faced by the State. This situation is not only confined to this State but prevails throughout the country. The State opened the current year with a deficit of Rs. 67.95 crores causing frequent ways and means problems. The Government of India has been moved to convert this amount into a one-time grant or a medium term loan. The Rangarajan Committee on financial problem of special category States has recommended for additional Central Plan Assistance to the State. Several fiscal and administrative measures have also been taken by my Government to contain the deficit and improve the financial position of the State. Additional resource mobilization efforts have been initiated by revision of power tariffs, land revenue rates, introduction of water supply rates and enhancement of revenue targets. To facilitate prompt collection of land revenue, the scheme for computerization of land records is being pursued vigorously. At this difficult time, sacrifices are required to be made by everyone and I appeal to the people to extend their co-operation to the Government.
3. My Government believes in solving the problem of insurgency through peaceful negotiation and I have repeatedly appealed to the insurgents to come to the negotiating table. The insurgents instead of responding to the magnanimous gesture of the Government have embarked upon senseless killing of innocent public. My Government will not permit such senseless violence to continue and will not hesitate to take effective action in crushing insurgency in the State once for all. I appeal to all right thinking people of the State to extend their whole-hearted co-operation to the Government in meeting the challenge posed by subversive and anti-national forces which have eaten into the vitals of the economy and prosperity of the State and seriously impaired the quality of life of its people.
4. Hon'ble Members are aware that production and productivity in the agriculture sector is highly dependent on the supportive measures like irrigation and flood control, soil conservation, supply of modern inputs, training and demonstration programmes etc. In all these areas, my Government has given special emphasis with a view to increase area and population coverage. Utilisation of irrigation potential has been increased to 84%. Minor irrigation projects which have a much shorter gestation period are being implemented vigorously. Command area development works are being carried out in full swing in order to achieve optimum benefits from the on-going medium irrigation schemes. To further augment the irrigation potential in the State, work on the Dolaithabi Irrigation Project has been taken up in right earnest. Due stress has also been given to identification of priority watershed and soil conservation measures.
5. During 1992-93, the State was severely affected by late monsoon and insufficient rainfall. To fight the drought situation and provide relief to the affected farmers the State Government machinery was fully geared up. Water pump sets were deployed, community nurseries were raised and temporary dams were constructed. Significant success continues to be achieved by the Rice Research Centre at Wangbal. The High Yielding Varieties of paddy namely “Leimaphou” and “Akutphou” has been released. For increasing production and productivity, stress is given to increase cropping intensity and utilisation of irrigation potentials, supply of improved seeds, P.P. Chemicals and fertilizers. Special programme will be taken up to encourage tribals to take up vegetable cultivation, fruit cultivation and plantation crop in the hill areas. Hon'ble Members are aware that the Central Agriculture University at Iroisemba has been established with effect from 26 January 1993 . The University will have seven specialized colleges spread in six States of the North-Eastern Region. The establishment of the University will benefit the region in its efforts to achieve self-reliance in agriculture.
6. Significant strides have been made by my Government in fishery development programmes. The total fish production has reached 10,000 tonnes and 50 million fish seeds have been produced from the public and private sectors.
7. The Co-operative movement in Manipur has emerged as one of the best tools for the betterment of the socio-economic condition of the rural masses in the State. Farmers are able to avail agricultural credit and also utilize agricultural implements consisting of tractors, power tillers, pump sets etc. from the 82 Agro Service Centres. Under the NCDC Scheme 172 rural godown having a total storage capacity of 20,200 MT. has been provided. A new co-operative and Loaning Policy of the co-operative organisation have been introduced in order to reach the benefits at the grass-root level.
8. Forestry development programme continue to occupy a prominent place in the development activities of the State. During the current year, 3025 hectares of land was afforested generating employment of 5.55 lakh mandays. To promote forestry, it is proposed to upgrade the Forest Guard Training School as a Ranger Training Centre. Royalty rates on forest produces have been rationalized to raise more resources.
9. My Government is continuing to wage a relentless battle for removal of poverty in the rural areas and towards this end, 1138 families have been benefited under the Integrated Rural Development Programme. Under the Jawahar Rozgar Yojna 6, 82,511 mandays of employment has been generated. To uplift the economic condition of the Scheduled Tribes and Castes 1167 families have been benefited under various welfare schemes of the Tribal Development Department.
10. In the field of industrial development, my Government lays maximum emphasis on the development of small scale and village industries keeping in view their potential for employment generation particularly in rural areas. In order to gear up production in this sector term loan to an extent of Rs. 54 lakhs has been disbursed to S.S.I. Units. Manipur is rich in natural resources and to explore the feasibility of tapping its geological field investigation have started for chromite, serpentinite and idocrase.
11. My Government attaches high importance to the development of handloom, handicrafts and sericulture sectors which provide opportunities for large-scale employment in the rural sector. Earnest endeavour will be given for the rapid growth of those sectors to generate employment in the rural areas.
12. My Government has been consistently striving to direct the potential energy of our talented young men and women to various creative fields of art, culture, games and sports and the sustained efforts made in this direction are yielding encouraging results. Our young men and women have won laurels both at the National and International levels. Modern sports infrastructure facilities are being provided. Youth welfare activities, National Service Scheme activities are held throughout the state and Voluntary Youth and Adventure organizations are extended financial assistance.
13. Hon'ble Members are aware that power development plays a significant role in the overall economic development of the State. My Government is, therefore, giving highest priority to schemes in the Power Sector. Gelnel Hydel Project is expected to be commissioned during this year. Efforts are being made to complete three other on-going Hydel Projects and to start the construction of the Loktak Down Stream Hydro Electric Project during the year 1993-94. Under the Rural Electrification Programme 28 villages have been electrified during the current year.
14. Internal road communication network is of vital importance for the socio-economic development of the State. My Government has, therefore, laid special stress on construction and improvement of road communication specially linking the administrative centres. During the current year a road network of 335 kms. has been completed. The construction of Fly-over at Keishampat will be started during 1993-94. A number of bridges are being constructed over different rivers and important State Highways.
15. The major objective of transport planning is to meet the transport needs of urban and rural areas. The Manipur State Road Transport Corporation is taking steps to purchase 15 new buses which will be deployed mainly in the hill areas. For the comfort and convenience of travelling passengers my Government has permitted a Travel Agency to operate a Single Window System for purchase of bus, railway and air tickets and will also take up construction of bus waiting sheds on important State Highways in the outskirts of Imphal city.
16. It has been the constant endeavour of my Government to provide improved health and medical care facilities to all sections of the society specially at the village and community levels. The National Health Policy for achieving “Health for all by 2000 AD” has been given special thrust. Under the Universal Immunisation Programme 65% of the target group of expectant mothers and infants have been immunized. Efforts are continuing to modernize the Jawaharlal Nehru Hospital by providing central sterile supply department, mechanized laundry, neuro-surgery unit and mortuary unit. Sophisticated diagnostic equipments, ultra-sound, whole body scanner are being installed. The major transmission of HIV infection in the state is through injection of drugs. With the assistance from the Government of India 4 additional drug de-addiction centres will be established. My Government will continue to make special thrust on information, education, surveillance and detection to combat the menace of AIDS.
17. The State Government has laid much emphasis on strengthening and streamlining the Public Distribution System in the State. During the current year construction of 2 godowns of 200 mts. capacity each at Paomata and Tengnoupal have been taken up which will raise the existing storage capacity in the State to 20,600 mts. Under the Revamped Public Distribution System, 46 new Fair Price Shops have been added and additional 57,236 Ration Cards have been distributed in the hill areas. To effectively operate the Public Distribution System through active participation of the people my Government have started setting up Fair Price Shop level Vigilance Committees.
18. Tourism today is regarded as one of the most dynamic industries in the world. To tap the considerable tourism potential of the State my Government has launched a vigorous drive to develop tourism as an industry in the State. Construction of Tourism Homes at Jiribam, Nungba and Tamenglong have been completed. Renovation work for the Tourist Homes at Sendra and Phubala has been taken up. The Moirang Tourist Home has been opened. Efforts are being made to develop tourist facilities along the National Highway at Mao, Maram and Moreh and to upgrade the Hotel Imphal into a 3-Star Hotel. Towards the effort to promote Tourism in the State a week long Tourism Festival was held at Imphal from 1st to 7th November 1992 .
19. My Government will continue to take all necessary steps to improve and augment the supply of treated drinking water supply, maintain sanitation standards and improve the drainage in urban and rural areas. The commissioning of the Canchipur Augmentation Scheme has vastly improved the water supply position within Imphal Municipal area and Greater Imphal areas. Similarly, work on the 2nd Phase of Porompat Water Supply Scheme has been taken up for early completion. Special schemes have been taken up in 30 small town and 46 partially covered problem villages have been converted into fully covered villages. Under the Urban and Rural Sanitation Schemes 40 Scheduled Tribe and Scheduled Caste villages have been covered and 1220 units of low-cost latrines have been constructed.
20. My Government's commitment to human resources development is earnest. The Council of Higher Secondary Education has been set up and new disciplines have been introduced in 8 colleges. A Task Force has been appointed for preparing Action Plan for implementing the recommendation of the State Education Commission and its recommendation is expected soon. A Polytechnic Institute for women is being planned for architectural engineering, textile technology and modern office management courses. To create more employment opportunities for our youth, a Business Management course has been introduced in the Manipur University .
21. I am sure that Hon'ble Members will appreciate the steps taken by my Government on many fronts inspite of the severe financial constraints. It will be the endeavour of my Government to provide better quality of life to the younger generation which the earlier generations were deprived of even if painful decisions and sacrifices are to be made. In conclusion, I would like to assure the Hon'ble Members of my Government's commitment to maintain communal harmony and peace promote and protect the interest of the weaker section, women and children to work assiduously for the development of the State.
I wish your deliberations all success.