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Rio at Mkg DPDB meet, focus on Education, Enterpreneurship, Agri
Correspondent MOKOKCHUNG, JUN 24 (NPN):
Published on 25 Jun. 2010 12:49 AM IST
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Nagaland chief Minister Neiphiu Rio reiterated that Mokokchung is a land of “Fashion and Music” and justified it by saying that the living condition and life styles in Mokokchung has crossed a certain stage after which people have reached modernity, indicating that they are one up on others.
He said this while addressing the special DPDB meeting held at Town Hall here Thursday. Stating that Mokokchung is geographically located at the centre of Nagaland, the chief minister said the district having highest literacy could also become the centre of education if educationists could set up schools and colleges that would also benefit neighboring districts.
Rio also pointed out that though 80% of the people were engaged in farming, they could produce only 40% of the food requirement. He therefore emphasized the need for agrarian reforms to transform Nagaland from a consuming to a producing society.
He said since no big industries could be set up in Nagaland due to various factors, such a transformation could lead to growth in the state’s GDP.
Rio emphasized that agri and allied sectors was the main strength and urged all to improve food sufficiency and security to achieve the Vision 2020 for the region.
On the Year of the Entrepreneurs as declared by the DAN government, he called upon entrepreneurs to avail opportunities and assured that the government would facilitate loans to set up business enterprises.
Rio said local entrepreneurs would be selected at the district level and recommended by the district administration. He opined that if the process went well, Nagaland could become the land of entrepreneurs and not land of festivals. Towards this, the chief ministers also urged upon NGOs, public leaders and even opposition members to identify genuine entrepreneurs, so that the government could assist them.
He also spoke on the restrictions of the13th Finance Commission regarding salaries which should not be more than 35% of the total revenue expenditure. Rio said in Nagaland’s case it was 61%. He attributed huge salary amount along with debts, interests, miscellaneous amounts which eat up 64% of the budget.
He said the Centre pointed out that the state cannot implement the 6th ROP under such a condition. The chief minister said the such difficulties were faced while trying to finalise the state Plan but the Centre generously granted the shortfall for which the state was grateful, he said. Rio appealed to CANSSEA to be reasonable in demanding more pay and to accept the government’s offer “because even if we want to give, we don’t have money”.
He also appealed to government servants saying they along with elected leaders were there to serve public but if they used up all money among themselves development would suffer.
He said the cabinet sub-committee on demands for the 6th RoP would be meeting with CANSSEA on Friday and expressed the hope that it would arrive at an agreement.
Meanwhile, replying to a query raised by NPCC president, I. Imkong during the meeting regarding the construction of a footbridge at Mokokchung town, Rio said there were some design defects among other problems followed by price escalation. He however added that there was a budget provision in the current year to resolve the issue.
Regarding the interlinking of roads in the town, Rio suggested that instead of taking up separate road constructions in the town, a DPR of circular roads in Mokokchung town be prepared and to take it up to Urban Ministry in order to get one sanction for one town at the same time.
The chief minister also said there was a plan in the current year, of convergence from NREGS to take up all village approach roads with PWD giving the 10% share and the RD department under NREGS program so that each approach road would be maintained through that fund.
Rio also suggested the opposition to highlight few areas of the state during the forthcoming North Regional Congress at Guwahati including the revival of Tuli Paper Mill.
On Wazeho Cement Plant, Rio said that it has already been upgraded to 150 capacity by the NSMDC.
He also informed that as requested by the “Congress friends”, State Planning Board (SPB) has decided to bring the common pool of the Local Area Development Fund (LADF) to 15% from 25%.
Further, Rio said it has been decided that tribal hohos should nominate their representatives to sit in the DPDB with bigger tribes nominating two persons and one each for minor/multiple tribes in a district.
The chief minister further urged the officers present to take up the commitment for the development of the district. Also referring to the bureaucrats, he suggested for sufficient distribution of funds to district officers to utilize, stating that concentration of funds at the HoD was demoralizing district officers and that district officers ought to know how much fund they were getting in the district.
Rio also said that the demands and requirements of all the districts were being documented and assured that all the points would be taken up.
The meeting was also attended by Home minister, Imkong L. Imchen, PHED minister, Dr. Ngangshi K. Ao, MLA and chairman Mokokchung DPDB and NIDC Nuklotoshi, parliamentary secretary, Er. Saku., NBDA advisor, L Temjen Jamir and NPCC president, I. Imkong.

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