Second session of 13th Nagaland Legislative Assembly begins
Roads, development and illegal migrants engage session
Kohima, Sep. 18 (EMN): The second session of the 13th Nagaland Legislative Assembly (NLA) began on Tuesday with issues ranging from roads to illegal immigrants, and government teachers to appointments dominating the agenda of the session. Road projects and the issue of illegal immigrants though, were the issues that engaged the ruling and the opposition members more.
Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio and Leader of Opposition TR Zeliang made obituary references to former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who passed away on August 16, and former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee who passed away on August 13. Before the list of business for the day proceeded, the assembly observed two minutes of silence as a mark of respect to the departed leaders.
PWD announces road policy
The Public Works department (roads and bridges) has constituted a road maintenance task force, which is working on a ‘comprehensive road policy.’ This was stated by minister for PWD (roads and bridges) Tongpang Ozukum in reply to a supplementary question during the question hour of the first sitting.
Reminding the treasury bench about the Cabinet’s first commitments to repair district headquarter roads within 60 days, opposition MLA Kuzholuzo Nienu queried whether work was being undertaken. Ozukum informed that 116.455 km have been prioritised out of which 70.801 km have been completed with the first instalment of INR 25 cr. as the total allocated fund. The remaining 45.654 km, he said, would be covered when the second release is made, and after the monsoon recedes.
In another starred question, MLA Vikheho Swu sought the reason behind the delay in awarding work order for construction of bridges. In regard to Sanuorü Bridge at the Secretariat Road in Kohima, Ozukum replied, the work order was issued in July 2016 but could not take off due to ‘landowner problems.’ Although the problem has been solved, he informed, work could not begin due to the rainy season.
Khughu Bridge between Kichilimi and Utsomi in Atoizu division: The minister explained that the tender was cancelled for the fourth time because the tendering procedure was not fulfilled. He said that the fifth call was opened on September 5, and tender evaluation is now in progress. He added that the work order would be issued after the technical and financial formalities are completed.
Tsuyi Bridge between Ghathashi and Hebolimi in Pughoboto division and Tsuyi Bridge between Natsumi and Asukiqa: Ozukum said there was delay in completion of the evaluation process resulting in the expiration of the bid validity. He said that the department was waiting for extension of time from the ministry to award the work.
Also, on the substitution of six projects, which were previously approved ‘in principle’ by the ministry of Roads and Transport, Ozukum maintained that they had to be substituted due to ‘non-sanctioning’ of projects even after a lapse of 1-3 years. More important road projects that needed immediate attention were proposed as substitutes, he said.
66,894 ILP issued in Nagaland since 2015; 505 offenders caught
Nagaland has recorded issuing 66,894 Inner Line Permits (ILP) from January 2015 till date. Deputy Chief Minister Yanthungo Patton, who is also the minister in charge of Home, said it was the consolidated figure from the district deputy commissioners in the state. He was replying to a starred query raised by opposition legislators Kuzholuzo Nienu and Dr. Imtiwapang Aier.
Patton said Dimapur topped the list with 54, 574 permits during the past four years while Kohima followed with 7271; Peren 1371; Mokokchung 720; Kiphire 552; Longleng 550; Wokha 500; Zunheboto 462; Mon 416; Phek 321; and Tuensang had the least with only 157 ILP. The number of ILP offenders who were caught by the administration since January 2018, he said, was 505 persons.
With regard to the steps the government was taking to check the influx of illegal immigrants, Patton pointed out that ‘periodic checks’ were being undertaken by the administration and the police in the districts. He informed that a committee was set up recently to examine reports of the previous committees and to recommend a more robust system for implementation of the ILP mechanism.
MHA approached for completion of 11th NAP (IR) project
Status of the 11th NAP (IR) battalion at Aboi: The deputy chief minister said that the establishment was ‘sanctioned’ under special planning assistance (SPA) but the ministry had stopped sanctioning the funds during 2012-13; work had had to be temporarily suspended then. However, he said it had resumed after the centre released funds; the state’s government has approached the ministry of Home Affairs to release the remaining funds to complete the project. ‘Once the basic functional infrastructures are completed, the battalion’s headquarter will be operational,’ he said.
Gov. gives assent to road safety amendment bill
Governor PB Acharya has given assent to three government bills including the Nagaland Road Safety Authority Act of 2013 (first amendment) Bill and the Nagaland Appropriation Bills 2018 no. 1 and no. 2.
Also, Neiphiu Rio introduced the Nagaland Goods and Services Tax (amendment) Bill of 2018. Speaker Vikho-o Yhoshü announced that matters relating to the bill would be taken up for consideration and for approval on September 20.
No progress in Tuli paper mill revival
Rio has said that there had been no progress in the revival of Tuli Paper Mill so far. Responding to a query raised by the opposition on the status of the project, Rio gave updates about the efforts that were made by the state government on the revival works since 2013 and the steps that were taken for the diversion of funds by the HPCL.
Land at Kolkata for guest house
MLA Chotisuh Sazo raised a question about follow up action concerning the land allotted to the Nagaland government at Rajarhat in Kolkata. Deputy Chief Minister Y Patton replied that the boundary wall, chowkidar’s quarter and site engineer’s office have been constructed on the land. He said that the government was contemplating construction of a guest house at Rajarhat.
Whooping 11, 098 registered societies in Nagaland
Replying to questions raised by Sazo concerning the Society Registration Act, Patton said that there were 11, 098 societies registered under the Society Registration Act. By section 3 (5) of the Societies Registration (Nagaland Third Amendment) Act, 2008, a society that fails to renew its registration is de-registered.
In reply to another query, minister G Kaito Aye said 68 registered thrift and credit cooperative societies are currently functioning in the state.
Aye said that the societies are fulfilling the statutory requirements stipulated in the Act; societies found violating provisions can be penalised or derecognised, and for defunct cooperative societies, cancelled.
92 posts of LDA, SA vacant in Works & Housing
MLA EE Pangteang raised a question concerning vacancy in the Works and Housing department from 1st January 2018 till date. Minister for NPWD Tongpang Ozukum replied that 24 LDA and 68 SA posts were vacant on ‘retirement.’ The break-up: Dimapur has eight vacant posts; Chantongya three, Kohima six; Naginimora three; Mokokchung 18, Zunheboto one; Atoizu nine; Longleng four; Pughoboto three; Tuli three; Mangkolemba three; Aghunato one; Aboi five; Mon four; Baghty three; Kiphire three; Tseminyu two; and Peren has three vacant posts.
The update said 33 LDA and 46 SA were appointed while eight employees were appointed from the “backward quota” from Jan. 1 till date.
82 posts of typist created under Home
To a query raised by MLA Muthingnyuba Sangtam, Patton replied that 82 typist posts were created in the Home department for regularisation as casual typists in the Nagaland Civil Secretariat. He furnished the list of casual typists proposed to be regularised and casual typists from the tribes: Chang, Sangtam (three), Yimchunger (one), Phom (two), Konyak (one) and Khiamniungan (one).
Also, in a reply to a query by MLA Kezhienyi Khalo, minister for Higher Education & Technical Education Temjen Imna Along said that the total number of assistant professors who were appointed since Jan. 1 2018 till date was 11. It was informed that the assistant professors were appointed on contractual fixed pay due to shortage in government colleges.