Guv hopes PM will bailout Nagaland from financial crisis
Appeals for setting up of Lokayukta and passing of women reservation bill
Kohima, November 22
[dropcap]G[/dropcap]overnor PB Acharya hoped that the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the Hornbill Festival will help the State get rid of the present financial crisis which has crossed Rs 1500 crore. In an interaction with media fraternity at Raj Bhavan here today, Acharya obliquely hinted that the State is marred by corruption as there are no records of utilisation of Rs 365 crore granted by former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 2003 to bailout the State from the then financial crisis.
He said Prime Minister is expected to give a special package as has been requested by the State government. However, he said the State government should be able prove itself worthy for it by tightening its belt and doing away with corruption.
Corruption has to stop somewhere while the government and politicians should think on how to check it and maintain accountability, he said adding that there is a need to decrease the expenses and increase revenue.
He also said Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan’s visit on November 29 as the chief guest during the celebration of 50 years of State Assembly will be a boon for the State.
On Naga political issue, he said there is genuine feeling among the Naga youths, including the overseas Naga people, that Nagaland comes out of the agony and the prolonged peace process settled so that Naga people can move forward and progress.
Maintaining that a strong government has come at the Centre and which has the ‘will and guts’ to solve the problem, he appealed to all the Naga political groups, elected government, intellectuals, NGOs and Naga people to come together and voice out their expectation on the issue.
He also said 60 members of the State Assembly and two members of Parliaments should come above party line in expressing what solution they want within the Constitution of India.
Acharya who had been to America on invitation by International Central for Cultural Studies (ICCS) from October 24 to November 4 last termed the visit as successful beyond expectation.
He also spoke about his recent meeting with Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh in New Delhi and holding purposeful discussion on the solution of Naga peace process. He said the Union Home Ministry is considering constitution of a Civilian Committee comprising representatives from Naga Hoho, ENPO, civil societies and Naga intellectuals to support the peace process, play a proactive role and give suggestion on the solution of the vexed Indo-Naga political problem.
Acharya stressed that the State government needs to set up Lokayukta and also appoint a RTI Commissioner to bring about a vibrant and strong democracy.
He said introduction of constitutional institutions like Lokayukta and RTI can bring about counter check against corruption and maintain accountability. Lokayukta should be immediately set up, he said while maintaining that the government should act strongly to bring democratic vibrancy.
He appealed that the State government grant 33% reservation for women so that they also get their rights to be elected as members of the civic bodies in the State.
Meanwhile, Acharya has vehemently condemned the recent killing of two students from Manipur, including a scholar in Delhi and racial attack on North East people in Bangalore.
He opined that that condemnation of such attack is not enough but positive steps should be taken up to stop its recurrence.
He, therefore, suggested that Fellowship Link Local Families should be initiated, wherein the people from North East region pursuing studies and working in different sectors are attached to those families living in the metropolitan cities.
They should also possess identity cards of the host families because it has been observed that the racial attacks are committed against those who are staying alone or in group in rented houses.
The Governor said such attacks should be done away and outside people working in one particular state should be considered an asset because they add to the workforce of the state.
He also asserted to write letters to the Lieutenant Governor of Delhi and Governor of Karnataka to seriously take up the issue.
Meanwhile, he said people of North East region working and studying in major cities should be considered an asset because they as young people empowered with knowledge are adding to the wealth and infrastructure of those cities and states.
Acharya said back home in Nagaland too, local people should review the situation within ourselves as there are many non-locals giving service to the people and adding to the work force of the State. Therefore, everyone should have an open mind that outsiders have come to serve us and should embrace them, he added.
On the upcoming Hornbill Festival, he said in order to build up the people to people contact several people from other parts of the country would be coming to witness the festival of festivals. Therefore, he appealed the people of the State to show their magnanimity that would help in doing away with the misgiving of others that Nagaland is not a safe place for outsiders.
Governor also informed that during the Hornbill Festival, Tourism Committee of Maharashtra Chamber of Commerce and Industries (MCCI) will hold their special session in Kohima. The session will be hosted by Dimapur and Kohima CCI on December 3 and 4.
He further informed that people from Arunachal Pradesh will come to witness the festival as part of the initiative ‘My home is India’. Such programme would greatly benefit the national integration of the country and build people to people contacts, he said.The Governor, as part of the PM’s Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana, appealed to the two members of Parliament from the State – Neiphiu Rio of Lok Sabha and Khekiho Zhimomi of Rajya Sabha – to adopt one village each from the Eastern Nagaland People’s Organisation (ENPO) areas and help them come at par with the rest of the advanced districts in the State. He also said they should spend their MPLADF for toilet constructions in the State, which is part of the Swacch Bharat Yojana.