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"Manipur Legislative Assembly-- Representing the voice of the people for over three decades..."
GOVERNOR'S ADDRESS 1985

* SUMMARY LIST OF GOVERNOR'S ADDRESS  

 

Address by His Excellency, the Governor of Manipur, General Kotikalapudi Venkata Krishna Rao (Retd.) to the Manipur Legislative Assembly on 18.2.1985.


Honourable Speaker and Other Distinguished Members of the House,

I have great pleasure in welcoming you here to the opening session of the Fourth Legislative Assembly of Manipur. I am confident that with your vast experience in public life, you will add to the wealth of this august House and enhance the level of debates and discussions over matters of public importance.

Honourable Members will join me in paying homage to our beloved Leader Shrimati Indira Gandhi who was treacherously and brutally assassinated on October 31,1984. The best homage that we can pay to her is to follow the ideals that she always stood for. The orderly transformation of power thereafter to Shri Rajiv Gandhi showed the unfaltering faith of our people in Democracy and renewed determination for maintaining unity and integrity of the country. 
Through their decisive mandate, the people of Manipur have unequivocally expressed their faith in a clean and stable administration. It is also a reaffirmation of the people in the policies and programmes of my Government and a mandate for putting an end to violence and lawlessness and taking the State further on the road to progress. My Government will make every endeavour to live up to this challenging task.

It is heartening to note the return of some extremist leaders in the recent general election who have since pledged to work under the framework of the Constitution. My Government fervently hopes that others who are still underground will come over ground by abandoning the path of violence to join the mainstream of national life. 

LAW & ORDER

The tangible improvement in the law and order situation over the years needs no mention. The peaceful conduct of the election itself bears testimony to the success achieved by my Government in this field. Honourable Members would recall that there was wide spread anxiety about the elections in the States and it is indeed a matter of great pride and satisfaction that there was no major untoward incident. Any attempt to destabilize has been firmly put down. The year was virtually free from extremists’ activity and violence and the Government has largely succeeded in restoring a feeling of security in the minds of the common men. A large number of extremists with arms and ammunition were arrested in counter insurgency operations, which has subdued the insurgent groups to a great extent and helped in restoring normalcy.

REHABILITATION

While maintaining a constant pressure on the extremists, my Government has been following a policy of reconciliation and has encouraged them to abjure violence and lead a peaceful, normal life. Towards this end 27 extremists facing trial were granted general amnesty. My predecessor had, in his address to this august House last year, mentioned about creation of a large number of Class III and IV posts for absorption of surrendered extremists. I am happy to state that 62 such persons have already been given employment and efforts are afoot to absorb others as well. Besides, rehabilitation assistance has been granted to a large number of persons.

GENERAL ADMN. & SERVICES

My Government has taken a number of steps for improving the service conditions of employees. The age of superannuation has been restored to 58 years keeping in mind the difficulties experienced by the employees if they retire at an early age. Five instalments of additional dearness allowances and fifteen days ad-hoc bonus has been granted to different categories of employees. Various other allowances admissible to them have also been revised in view of the rising costs.

Special efforts have been made to do away with the ad-hoc culture that was hitherto prevalent in the Government. A complete ban has been imposed on further ad-hoc appointments and all the departments have been instructed to take steps for regularization of the existing cases with strict adherence to the recruitment rules. As a part of this policy, 87 class I and 118 Class II officers have been appointed on promotion on a regular basis. Besides, 55 Class I and 44 Class II officers have been confirmed in their respective services during the year. Recruitment rules in respect of 38 posts have also been notified to facilitate regular appointments to such posts.

It has long been felt that a Government servant has to be vested with authority commensurate with his responsibilities for him to be effective. As such, greater delegation of powers is presently under the active consideration of the Government, which is expected to be finalized soon. This will go a long way in improving the quality of administration.

POLICE

In order to improve the efficiency and bring about a qualitative change in the law and order administration, 2 senior posts in the rank of DIG along with necessary supporting staff have been created. The police communication continued to receive high priority and has seen a lot of modernization. The State now has over 160 Wireless Stations and all the District Headquarters have a teleprinter link with Imphal with the result that the communication system has been infused with an efficiency that was hitherto unknown.

A large number of residential quarters and barracks have been constructed under the Seventh Finance Commission award, which has eased the problem of housing of policemen to an appreciable extent. Our efforts in this direction will continue so that the working conditions of the police force may improve further.

JAIL

A number of steps have been taken in the past to revitalize and strengthen the Jail administration in the State which has led to a significant improvement in this field. Construction of Jails in some of the hill districts had also been taken up as a part of this policy. These are expected to be completed shortly which will help reduce pressure on the Central Jail, Imphal, thus leading to an improvement in the facilities in our Jails.

VIGILANCE

The State Vigilance Commission has been working at detection and investigation of cases of corruption and for suggesting preventive action. A large number of cases were disposed of during the year. A specific case having wider ramifications has also been referred to the CBI. There has been a perceptible decline in receipt of cases of allegation of corruption by the Commission, which is indicative of the impact it has had in reducing corruption in Government. My Government is determined to bring about honesty in public life at all levels and no efforts will be spared in this direction.

LAW

Honourable Members would recall the reference to the legal aid programme in the State. I am happy to record that a good beginning has been made in the right direction by providing such aid to a large number of people during the year. With a view to popularizing the programme, various conferences and workshops have been organized at different places and legal aid News Letters have been distributed free of cost.

FINANCE

I need hardly mention that because of the State’s meagre resources and expanding areas of expenditure, the ways and means position of the Government continues to be under strain. This has necessitated various economy measures to restrict the non-plan expenditure. These include curtailing avoidable expenditure and restriction on purchase of vehicles and other luxury items etc.

Effective steps have been taken for mobilizing additional resources. An area which has received particular attention is that of small savings where Rs. 34 lakhs had been mobilized by the end of December’84. Over Rs. 93 lakhs had already been realized as Excise duties in the first three quarters itself and the figure is expected to go up to Rs. 1.14 crores by the end of the year. This would represent a step up of about 25% over last year’s collection. Tax collection drive has been intensified which is expected to net in over Rs. 2.5 crores during the current financial year.

REVENUE

The Manipur Land Revenue and Land Reforms Act, 1980 has been extended to Khoupum Valley and 809 hectares of land has been surveyed. The land owners have been issued pattas without charging any premium. The Department is undertaking survey operation in Ikop and Kharungpat which are unsurveyed areas in the valley.

To strengthen the revenue administration and bringing it closer to the people, new SDC offices have been opened at Island in Ukhrul District and Borobekra of Jiribam Sub-division.

DEVELOPMENT

The improvement in the law and order situation has given an impetus to our developmental efforts and the State has made rapid strides in various fields. My Government has been greatly concerned about the poor and the weaker sections of the society and, as such, poverty amelioration programmes have been high on our priority. A system of intricate checks and balances has been devised into the system with a view to constantly monitoring the implementation of various programmes and ensuring that the quality of work does not suffer.

NEW 20-POINT PROGRAMME

The New 20-Point Programme has been pursued vigorously. The outlay on this programme in the current year is of the order of Rs. 26 crores. The State has done consistently well in the fields of IRDP, supply of drinking water to problem villages, housing for economically weaker sections, plantation of trees, family welfare, primary health care facilities, adult literacy and village and small industries where we were placed in the highest performance group by the Planning Commission. Our ranking in all the States of the country was tentatively placed at 12 by the Planning Commission at the end of December 1984. Under this programme, additional irrigation potential of 4,000 Ha was created through large and medium projects and 813 Ha through minor irrigation. Over 8,000 families were brought above the poverty line by providing assistance under the Integrated Rural Development Programme and the unemployment problem in the rural areas was mitigated through NREP which helped in generating 1.22 lakhs mandays of employment. 44 hectares of land was distributed to landless persons, about 4,500 S.C. and S.T. families were provided financial assistance and 105 villages were extended drinking water facilities. 14 villages had been electrified and over 1 crore trees planted by the end of December 1984. Three hundred and two small industrial units were set up and 60 new fair price shops were opened. Two Primary Health Centres and 61 Primary Health Sub-Centres were also opened and various steps for control of communicable diseases like T.B., Blindness etc. were taken. The performance in some of the areas has not been up to the mark, but steps are being taken now to ensure that all the targets set for the current year are achieved well within time.

PLAN

Honourable Members would recall that this is the terminal year of the Sixth Plan. The Seventh Plan of the State and the Annual Plan of 1985-86 have already been prepared proposing an allocation of Rs. 1,093 crores and Rs. 193 crores respectively. Against this, the working group has recommended a total outlay of Rs. 560 crores for the seventh Plan and Rs. 102.7 crores for the Annual Plan 1985-86. The plan is yet to be finalized.

In response to the growing needs of the State, a separate unit of Science and Technology and Environment has been created to oversee the implementation of science and technology oriented programme in a more effective and efficient manner.

AGRICULTURE

Although the State has had erratic precipitation during the mid crop season in 1984-85, the performance in the agricultural sector has been very gratifying. The production of rice touched an all time high of 3,45,000 tonnes. The Union Agriculture Ministry has also appreciated the performance of the State Government in this sector. The production of pulses and oilseeds also registered impressive growth. Efforts have been made to increase the production as well as productivity through increased use of fertilizers and pesticides, high yielding varieties of seeds which now cover an area of 80,000 hectare and large-scale extension work. It is a result of these programmes only that the productivity of rice in Manipur is today the highest in the entire North Eastern Region.

The tea and coffee plantations in Jiribam have been fairly successful. Additional 40 hectares will be brought under tea plantation and coffee plantation will cover an area of 14 hectares by the end of this financial year. These estates are being developed under the direct supervision of the Plantation Crops Corporation. Honourable Members would recall that four coffee estates had been established at Sorbung in Ukhrul and New Pansang, Parbung, and Senvawn in Churachandpur last year. Three more such estates are expected to be set up by the end of this year.

HORTICULTURE & SOIL CONSERVATION

Manipur abounds in horticultural produce and the agro climatic conditions in the State are eminently suitable for development of horticulture. However, an effective strategy for full exploitation of this potential has not been evolved so far for want of statistical data. In order to overcome this shortcoming, horticultural census on 100% enumeration basis had been taken up in 1982-83. This survey is expected to be completed this year, which will provide valuable information for formation of a long-term programme for horticultural development.

A large number of seedlings were raised in Government nurseries this year, which were even sent to States located as far as Madhya Pradesh. This has opened up new avenues of development. Another remarkable achievement was the finalisation of a large export deal with the USSR. Further export possibilities are being explored. A new beginning has been made with the introduction of bottled fruit drinks, which have been very popular with the public. This activity will be further expanded in the years to come. 

My Government is greatly concerned about the practice of jhum in the hill areas, which has been causing incalculable harm to the ecology of the State. With a view to preventing further damage, soil conservation programmes have been taken up on watershed basis. Survey of Luwangleima Water-shed has been completed and of Sibpurikhal is in progress. Four pilot projects on water harvesting and propagation of technology in rain fed areas have also been taken up under the aegis of the N.E.C. this year.

FOREST

The fast erosion of the forest wealth of the State has been a cause of alarm and my Government has intensified its efforts to arrest this trend. We have taken up various programmes that would enable intensified utilization of forest, waste and marginal lands and generate employment in the rural and hill areas. The main strategy includes intensification of afforestation programme to restore ecological balance, planned utilization to increase productivity of forest land, popularization of social forestry programme to meet the fuel wood requirement of the people and taking up measures for protection of wildlife.

In order to attain these objectives, 25 development schemes under the forestry sector were taken up this year. These include plantation of species of industrial and commercial value like teak, pine etc. over an area of 1,200 hectares, plantation of fuel wood and small timber over an area of 1,605 hectares under the social forestry programme and rubber plantation in Jiribam area, which now covers an area of 415 hectares.

Large scale afforestation has also been done as a part of soil conservation programme. Over 1,500 hectares of area was brought under the forest cover with a view to keeping the hill slopes and the denuded area under permanent vegetative cover and preventing further siltation of the riverbeds.

IRRIGATION & FLOOD CONTROL

Honourable Members would recall that my Government had embarked on irrigation projects in a big way in the sixth Plan. Altogether 7 major and medium projects are currently under way and the potential expected to be created by the end of the plan is 43,000 hectares. Khoupum Dam Project has been completed and the Loktak Lift Irrigation, Imphal Barrage and Sekmai Barrage Projects have also started giving partial irrigation benefit. These Projects will be completed in all respects early next year. Singda Dam Project had run into rough weather due to unexpected geological problems which have now been sorted out and it is expected to be completed in the Seventh Plan. In addition to this, 2,000 hectares of irrigation potential will be created though minor irrigation scheme this year which will raise potential thus created to 12,756 hectares. Further, 24 RLI Schemes have been completed this year against a target of 16.

The ravages caused by periodic floods in the State have been engaging the attention of my Government and we have intensified our efforts to tackle them on a long-term basis. Up till now flood control works were being executed on a piecemeal basis. However, master plan for flood control has now been prepared and submitted to the Central Water Commission. Flood control projects in respect of some of the major flood causing rivers like Imphal, Iril, Thoubal, Wangjing, etc. are also under preparation. Merakhong Project is already being implemented. A total of 19,250 hectares area had been given protection up to the end of 1983-84. This year another 2,500 hectares will be added to this.

COMMAND AREA DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY

You will recall that a Command Area Development Authority was set up in the State in the year 1982-83 with a view to creating irrigation infrastructure for efficient utilization of the potential created by the various irrigation projects and providing extension services to the farmers. This is being achieved mainly through construction of field channels and introduction of Warabandi system of irrigation. Field channels to cover an area of 3,000 hectares are expected to be completed by the end of this year.

CO-OPERATION

The State has a very large number of co-operative societies mainly in the field of agriculture and handlooms. As agriculture is the main occupation of the people, the Government has concentrated its effort on providing better agricultural services. Altogether 4 Agro-Service Centres have already been opened with this end in view and another 5 are likely to be opened with NCDC finance. Large quantities of fertilizers, fruits and vegetables were also marketed through the Co-operatives. Generous assistance was also given to the Fisheries Co-operative Societies for development of inland fisheries. Honourable Members would be aware of the shortage of milk that exists in the State. In order to promote dairy activity, a Co-operative Milk Producers’ Union was organized recently in Senapati with 61 primary milk producers’ co-operatives as its members. This will not only help in getting the producers remunerative price for milk and other products but is also expected to ease the pressure on milk supply in the State.

In order to prevent further deterioration and revitalize the administration of the State Co-operative Bank, swift action was called for. The Board was, therefore, superseded and a new Administrator was appointed to look after the affairs of the Bank, after due amendment of the Manipur Co-operative Societies Act, 1976 through an Ordinance.

RURAL DEVELOPMENT

The Community Development Programme covers all the blocks in the State. This programme includes schemes in communication, agriculture, animal husbandry, small industries, arts and culture etc. And a total of Rs. 12.60 lakhs will be spent on this programme this year.

Special poverty alleviation and employment generation programmes like IRDP, NREP, and RLEGP have been vigorously pursued and have resulted in widespread benefits to a large section of the rural poor. Altogether about 11,700 families will be provided assistance under the IRDP and about 5.5 lakhs mandays of employment is also expected to be generated under the employment generation programmes by the end of this year.

TRIBAL DEVELOPMENT

My Government has taken up special programmes in the spheres of education, communication, agriculture, animal husbandry, small industries, arts and culture, and related areas for speedy development of the Scheduled Castes and Tribes. A total of Rs. 3.85 crores is being spent this year under the State Plan, Special Central Assistance and Centrally Sponsored Schemes for the welfare of this section of population. Notable activities under this programme include construction of 37 school buildings, 6 hostel buildings and 4 community halls. About 140 Kms. of village roads are also expected to be constructed. Construction of one multipurpose hall-cum-indoor stadium is also underway at Churachandpur and is expected to be completed shortly. Other programmes in this category include providing financial assistance to poor patients for treatment, provision of scholarships to different categories of students and extension of grant-in-aid to various social and cultural organizations of tribal youth.

VETERINARY & ANIMAL HUSBANDRY

The Veterinary and Animal Husbandry Department has been playing a vital role in the field of animal health coverage, livestock development and dairying etc. With the opening of 6 new Veterinary Dispensaries and 2 Veterinary Aid Centres, animal health coverage in the State has been further strengthened. Over 5 lakh cases had been treated up to December 1984 and an even larger number of animals immunized against contagious diseases. Three new Sub-Centres under the Intensified Cattle Development Project have been opened to strengthen the massive crossbreeding programme in the State. Dairy Development programme has been intensified and 2 Rural Dairy Centres at Moirang and Kangpokpi will be fully operational by the end of the current year. Poultry and Piggery development programme have been vigorously pursued. A large number of piggery and poultry units have been established under the Special Livestock Production Programme.

FISHERIES

The State has tremendous potential in inland fisheries. My Government has given due attention to this area of activity through various promotional schemes as well as by directly intervening in the development and maintenance of fisheries. Sixteen million of fish seeds have already been produced and this figure is expected to go up to 20 million by the end of the year. These seeds are distributed to the fish farmers on credit basis under the Fish Seed Bank Scheme. Financial assistance was given to a large number of farmers for promotion of pisciculture. Newsletters and bulletins were published for popularizing the fishery schemes amongst the people under extension programme.

A total of 3,700 tonnes of table fish had been produced by the end of December 1984 and the current year’s target of 5,000 tonnes is expected to be met fully. As in the past, a fish fair was organized at Bir Tikendrajit Park in connection with Ningol Chakkouba festival and a record 20,000 Kgs. of fish was made available to the public at controlled rates on this occasion.

The steady deterioration in the condition of some of our lakes has been a cause of anxiety in all quarters. The government is fully alive to this problem and every effort is being made to improve their conditions and prolong the life.

PUBLIC HEALTH ENGINEERING

My Government is greatly concerned about the supply of potable water to the people in the rural as well as urban areas. However, in spite of our best efforts, the situation continues to remain a little difficult in Imphal town due to depletion of available sources and a steady rise in the population. Against the demand of 12 million gallons the installed capacity is only 7.2. MGD. The expected supply of 4 MGD from Singda Dam reservoir has not materialized so far which has further worsened the situation. However, a scheme for augmentation of Canchipur and Porompat has been taken up which is expected to raise the availability of water by 2.5 MGD. All the other District Headquarters in the State have satisfactory water supply. As many as 105 villages had been extended water supply schemes till December 1984 and 55 villages more are expected to be covered in the remaining 3 months which will leave only 400 problem villages for coverage during the Seventh Plan. Efforts to explore ground water resources have also been intensified and a large number of tube wells were bored this year which are capable of supplying water ranging from 700 to 5000 gallons per hour.

The programme of sanitation has been followed up earnestly. 15 villages are expected to be covered with rural sanitation schemes this year. In addition, demonstrations of water sealed latrines were carried out at a large number of places which were very popular with the public. A sewerage system in Imphal town will be taken up in the Seventh plan.

POWER

The power position in Manipur has improved remarkably with the commissioning of the Loktak Hydro Electric Project in August, 1984. Imphal, the main load censer of Manipur is now fully supplied with grid power and the drawal of power from grid has reached 20.8 MW in December 1984. Emphasis has been given to utilize the grid power to the maximum extent and to curtail the uneconomical generation of power from diesel sets. Towards this end, the capacity of the main receiving station at Yurembam is being augmented from 25 MVA to 40 MVA. The 132/33 KV station at Jiribam with a capacity of 6.3 MVA is under construction. The Loktak Jiribam 132 KV line has been completed and charged since November 1984. A large number of 33/11 KV Sub-Stations have been erected. However, some of the interior areas which cannot be connected to the grid for reasons of economy will continue to be fed with diesel power. As such, as new 200KW diesel powerhouse was opened at Khoupum. Rural electrification programme has made steady progress and about 60 villages are expected to be electrified this year.

In order to exploit the abundant hydroelectric potential in the hill areas of the State, 6 micro hydel projects are currently under construction. Nungshangkhong Project, with an installed capacity of 1.5 MW, is expected to be commissioned very soon and Lokchao Project in 1985-86. Investigation in respect of 15 other micro and 2 major hydel projects has also been commenced.

ROADS AND BRIDGES

In spite of various constraints like shortage of materials, escalation of cost, inclement weather conditions etc., significant progress had been made in the field of road construction. An additional length of 86 Kms. is being added to achieve a total length of 3,645 Kms. By the end of this year efforts have been made to provide surfacing to unsurfaced sections of State Highways, major district roads and other district roads. Hence no additional length is being added to these 3 categories of roads. The riding quality of a large number of roads in Imphal town has also been improved. In addition, 4 permanent bridges and 100 culverts are scheduled for completion this year.

Under the Minimum Need Programme, 92 villages with population of 1,500 and above and 88 villages with population between 1,000 and 1,500 are expected to be connected by all weather roads during this year.

BUILDINGS

A large number of residential and office buildings have been constructed. The most notable achievement was the State Banquet Hall, which was constructed, in record time. Other prominent buildings include the Election Office, P.W.D. Block-A, Nurses Training Hostel phase-II, the New Secretariat building phase-II, District and Sessions Judges’ Court at Lamphelpat, the Circuit House at Ukhrul, a large number of School and Health Centre buildings and a host of residential quarters. The Mini-Secretariat buildings at Chandel, Senapati and Ukhrul are expected to be completed shortly.

INDUSTRIES

Honourable Members are aware of the industrial backwardness of the State which is on account of geographical location and weak infrastructural facilities. However, the State is richly endowed with raw materials and human resources. Efforts are now afoot to exploit these to the fullest extent.

The Government of India has approved opening of 2 new District Industries Centres at Bishnupur and Thoubal this year and with this, all the Districts in the State now have the services of District Industries Centres. Appreciating the need for generating self-employment, these DICs would assist 1,000 educated unemployed youths in providing self-employment both in industrial and service sector.

The Electronics Industry has made steady progress. About 2,500 Transistor sets and 650 TV sets are expected to be assembled by the end of the year. Mechanised Dye House Project will be commissioned next year for the benefit of handloom weavers of Manipur.

The commissioning of the Loktak Hydel Project has brightened the prospects of industrial development and the Government is presently considering a large number of projects. These include a bamboo chipping plant, starch and glucose factory, and assembly unit for colour T.V. sets for which license has already been obtained, a printed circuit board plant and voltage stabilizer unit. The Government is also exploring the possibilities of setting up plants for assembly of cycles and telephone instruments.

The small industrial units were given every encouragement and their number has risen from 2,593 in 1982-83 to 3,300 this year. The handloom cloth production has registered an increase from 8.77 million metres in 1983-84 to 12 million metres this year. Financial assistance was extended to a large number of small units both in the form of subsidy as well as loans.

MEDICAL AND HEALTH

Primary Health Centres were opened at Sawombung and Maram under the Minimum Needs Programme and 63 Sub-Centres at various other places, which have resulted in vast improvement in the health care facilities in the State. Rural Hospital at Parbung is also likely to be completed within this year.

The 50-bedded ward unit at Chingmeirong T.B. Hospital has been inaugurated and a T.B. Control Centre at Chandel is also scheduled to be opened very shortly. The hospital at Churachandpur has been expanded to accommodate 100 beds.

Several measures were taken for control of communicable disease like T.B., Blindness, Leprosy etc. The department also organized several mass media programmes to create awareness amongst the people. Mass immunization programmes against Typhoid, Cholera etc. were also taken up on a large scale

FAMILY WELFARE

The family welfare programme has been pursued vigorously keeping in view the national goal of achieving unitary rate of net reproduction by the year 2000 AD. The programme which was initially met with a little resistance by the people, has been slowly gaining acceptance and a large number of people, has been coming forward voluntarily to adopt family welfare measures. This has helped the State achieve more than 60% of its target by the end of December 1984. The service facilities were improved and modernized and a large number of camps were organized at various places as a part of this programme.

With a view to popularizing the programme and removing misgivings of the people about birth control measures, mass education and media activities were intensified. About 170 village level orientation-training camps with accent on family welfare and maternity and child health services were organized. Intensive publicity through advertisements, booklets, leaflets and slogan posters etc. was done in far-flung areas.

EDUCATION, SOCIAL WELFARE AND ARTS & CULTURE

Honourable Members would recall that my Government has set up an Education Commission to look into the shortcomings of the present system of education and to recommend suitable measures for its improvement. The Commission has already held a series of meetings, and is expected to submit its recommendations shortly.

A 10+2 system of education, with accent on vocational training at the plus two stage, and Three Years’ Degree Course are shortly going to be introduced in the State. A proposal to hold competitive examinations at class V and VIII levels for award of scholarships to meritorious students is presently under the consideration of the Government.

A number of steps have been taken for expansion of educational facilities and for improvement of the quality of education. These include appointment of 64 lecturers and a large number of teachers for schools, construction of 221 school buildings and renovation work of many colleges. In addition, 3,376 classrooms for elementary schools are also expected to be constructed by the end of the year. Special programme for improvement of standard of teaching of science and mathematics in the schools were also taken up. Manipur University has seen a lot of expansion this year. Other schools and colleges in the State were also given financial assistance. Free learning materials were provided to 50,000 children belonging to weaker sections of the society.

The State Institute of Education has been divided into 4 units namely, Teacher Education and Extension Services Unit, Curriculum and Evaluation Unit, Language and Humanities Unit and Educational Survey and Statistics Unit. A State Board of Teacher Education has also been formed which will work for improvement of teacher education.

Adult Education Programme has been pursued vigorously. Altogether 238 learning centres enrolling over 6,000 persons were opened under the State Adult Education Project. Similarly, another 30,000 persons have been covered under the Rural Functional Literacy and Voluntary Agencies’ Projects.

The Government has taken up a number of social welfare programmes. These include special nutrition programme for children in the age group 0-6 years and expectant mothers, integrated child development services, old age pension scheme, welfare of handicapped and correctional services. Recreational facilities for children were also provided at a large number of places.

The State has tremendous wealth in arts and culture. With a view to promoting this activity, generous financial assistance was given to a large number of organizations engaged in the fields of dance, music, drama, library, museum, theatre and literature etc. The Government has also encouraged exchange of cultural troupes at the national level, which will not only serve to enrich our own culture but will go a long way in promoting national integration.

SPORTS AND YOUTH WELFARE

My Government has attributed a high priority to youth welfare and sports activities. This being the International Year of the Youth, special emphasis was given to the programmes of this section of the society. A weeklong programme involving symposia, essay competition, youth rally against drug abuse and social evils, shram-dan etc. was organized in the month of January to launch the International Youth Year. Financial assistance was given to a large number of youth organizations for organizing social service camps. Some youth camps were organized directly through the Sports Directorate.

Sports infrastructure in the state was improved significantly. Preliminary work on the sports complex at Khuman Lampak has already been done. The construction of mini-stadia at four district headquarters is also in good progress. Honourable Members would be happy to learn that, as a result of the sustained efforts made by us in the past, the Government of India have approved the construction of a Sports Centre of NIS Patiala in Imphal in the Seventh Plan. During the year a large number of sports meets were organized at various levels involving school going students, rural youths and women. Financial assistance was given to our sportsmen for participation in various competitions at the national level where our boys and girls have won a large number of medals and trophies.

TOURISM & PUBLICITY

A number of steps have been taken for development of tourism in the State. With the extension of the Tourist Lodge, the accommodation there has been nearly doubled. Action for construction of Tourist Homes at Shiroi, Khongjom, Churachandpur and Jiribam has also been taken. A youth hostel in collaboration with the Government of India is also to be constructed very shortly. Loktak Lake is our main tourist attraction and efforts are being made for providing water sports facilities there to enhance its tourism value. The I.N.A. memorial at Moirang has been taken over by the Government with a view to improving its condition. The work is in progress.

Directorate of Information and Public Relations has the crucial role of disseminating information relating to Government activities to the public correctly and regularly. This is being done through publication of various periodicals, press releases and audio-visual medium. In order to project the image of the Government at the national level, a large number of documentary newsreels were telecast through Doordarshan Kendra, New Delhi. Information Centres were opened at Tamenglong, Chandel and Senapati to cater to the needs of the reading public.

LOCAL SELF GOVERNMENT

Various programmes for development of Imphal and neighbouring towns have been taken up. As a part of integrated development of small and medium towns, several works are going on in Kakching and Jiribam. The Planning and Development Authority, under the Local Self-Government, is constructing commercial-cum-residential complex at Lamphelpat with loan obtained from the Housing & Urban Development Corporation. Steps for construction of a super market at Chingamacha have been initiated. Housing colonies are being taken up at various places of the State through Planning and Development Authority. In addition, a master plan for drainage system in Greater Imphal area is being prepared. Construction of drainage and environmental improvement programme has also been taken up in some tribal inhabited villages of Imphal Town.

FOOD AND CIVIL SUPPLY

With a view to strengthening the public distribution network, a large number of fair price shops were opened and the State had already exceeded the target of this year under the 20-Point Programme by December, raising the total number of fair price shops and the agents in the State to over 1350. Over 21,000 MTs of rice and 4700 MTs of sugar were procured and sold to the public in the first three quarters. Besides, large quantity of edible oils, cement, GCI sheets etc. were also marketed through Government nominated stockists. In order to increase the storage capacity in the hill districts, 5-grain godowns are presently under construction. Trucks have been procured for the first time for transportation of essential commodities to the interior areas.

What I have narrated is only a brief outline of the multifarious activities of the Government but is indicative of the rapid strides that we have made in a variety of fields. Our thrust has been on accelerating the pace of development in some key sectors so that the State may catch up with the rest of the country. The peaceful and stable conditions that have prevailed over the year have aided us in our efforts. The overwhelming support that we have received from the people for the policies and programmes of my Government has been as much a matter of pride and elation as a catalyst for galvanizing us into action and proving worthy of the confidence reposed by the people in us. I am confident that we shall succeed in our endeavour to provide a clean and an efficient Government to the people with the wholehearted co-operation of the Honourable Members.

I extend my best wishes to all of you in your deliberations.

JAI HIND


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