Imphal: Manipur chief minister N.Biren Singh assured the House that his government will look into the demand for inclusion of Meetei/Meitei in the Schedule Tribe list, on the sixth day of the ongoing 12th session of the 11th Manipur Legislative Assembly on Tuesday.
Biren gave the assurance replying to a query and supplementary raised by MLA K. Meghachandra during question hour. He said it is a little tricky issue as there has been difference in opinion amongst the people in this regard.
Maintaining peaceful co-existence among the different communities in the state is equally important with the protection of any community. Although there has been a need to protect the Meetei/Meitei community, there is also the need to take some more time to look into various aspects of its inclusion in the Schedule Tribe list. There have been informal communications with the Central leaders in this regard, he added.
Plan to make the state self-sufficiency in fruits and vegetables
The chief minister, who is also in-charge of horticulture while replying to a question raised by MLA Surjakumar Okram said, there is plan to make the state self-sufficient in fruits and vegetables as a part of the mission “Vocal for Local”.
He said, under the centrally sponsored scheme, Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture, the coverage area for vegetables has increased to 2970 hectres in 2020-2021 from 1412 hectres in 2019-20. A specific scheme on value chain marketing of quality local products through brand building initiatives has been proposed under state plan.
A task force to ensure self-sufficiency of potato, pea, onion, garlic and mustard has been constituted and activities have been taken up, the chief minister said.
Measures on Covid-19
A total of 659 health workers including 86 medical officers, 309 staff nurse and 264 multi-tasking staff were recruited on contractual basis to assist regular staffs deputed to Covid Care centres, quarantine centres and testing Centres, Biren said in reply to a question and supplementary raised by MLA AK. Mirabai Devi.
The chief minister said initially they were engaged for only three months but as per requirement their period of engagement was extended to another three months. He said as of now the situation has been improved considerably with the decrease in the rate of infection. With the improvement of recovery rate, facility for home isolation has also been introduced and various Covid Care centres have also been closed. Country-wide Covid vaccination drive has also been taken up. In view of the situation and due to fund constrain, government cannot afford further engagement of the health workers, he added.
Labour and employment minister Th. Satyabrata has informed the House that a total of 15,945 migrant workers have returned from other states during the lockdown period. He was replying to a question raised by Surjakumar. The minister said, 14 categories have been identified to treat the returnees as migrant workers. Although no specific scheme or programme meant for them has been introduced, the government will assist them through programmes like Start-Up and Stand Up.
Issue of non-issuance of Economically Weaker Section Certificate to the poor
During zero hour, Meghachandra drew the attention of the House by raising the issue of non-issuance of Economically Weaker Section Certificate to the poor people in the state even though it has been implemented in other parts of the country. He said the Act has been passed in the Parliament in the year 2019 but till now the needy section of the society cannot avail the benefits of the 10 per cent reservation in admission to various central educational institutions. Instead of getting the benefits by the students of the state, students from outside the state with EWS Certificate are enjoying the benefits in Central Educational Institutions in the state such Manipur University, RIMS, CAU etc. He also urged the government to take up necessary steps as early as possible.
Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India
Chairman of the Committee on Public Accounts, Manipur Legislative Assembly Dr Chaltonlien Amo, presented the Fifty-Fourth Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India for the year ended March 31, 2018 and Pending Paras Taken up on the Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India for the year ended March 31, 2017 and Fifty-Third Report on the Report of the Excess Over Voted Grants and Charged Appropriations (2017-2018).