Namthang, 17 May:

Chief Minister Pawan Chamling today addressed the public of Namthang-Rateypani constituency, South Sikkim as a part of his 32-day state-wide public outreach tour ‘Jan Sewa Jan Samman Yatra’. The programme was held at Pongla Ground in Namthang.

Addressing the gathering, the Chief Minister spoke in brief about the objective of Jan Samparka Abhiyan which he said was to empower the general public, particularly the grassroot populace on a long term basis.

The Chief Minister also spoke about the State Government’s decision to enhance the salaries of ASHA facilitators, aganwadi workers and grade-D employees and laborers and further assured that his government will continue to work for the public.

Further, the CM reiterated the need for Sikkim Subject holders to tap economic benefits provided by the State Government by setting up their own business enterprises instead of subletting their shops and property for commercial purposes.

He also announced that open tender will be initiated for the rural public through the office of Block Development Officers or through e-tenders from Gangtok in contrast to tenders issued at Zilla level.

The Chief Minister also highlighted the impressive improvements in life expectancy in Sikkim, elimination of life threatening diseases from the State and improved standard of living and stated it was an indication of growth and progress.

As for the demands sanctioned by him as part of the tour, the CM reiterated that all the sanctioned works will begin within two months.

“Engineers and officials will be coming to carry out surveys of lands where infrastructural demands have been sanctioned,” he said.

He further appealed to the people to take land compensation as prescribed.

The Chief Minister also maintained that opposition political parties in Sikkim were trying to instigate people in the name of caste and religion and urged the public to keep away from religion, caste and class-based discord and conflict and make Sikkim a peaceful and progressive State.

He stated that the 32-day Jan Samparkh Abhiyan was for the public to bring forth their grievances and get in touch with the Chief Minister directly with their inputs for policy formulation.

He also said that in the coming days, private business sector of Sikkim will be directed to employ 90% Sikkimese in tourism, hospitality industry and other similar trades to ensure local employment.

“We are planning to place the Bill for such Act in the coming assembly session which will be held in the first week of July,” the CM said

The Chief Minister also sanctioned various projects based on the demands of the people of Namthang-Rateypani constituency.

Among the sanctioned projects are- construction of auditorium at Phong Secondary School, construction of various link-roads under Namthang Rateypani constituency, laying of drinking water pipeline and repair works from Tarkhola to Phongla, footpath construction in the road leading up to Ashta-Chiranjeevi Dham at Nagi Dara, construction of public ground in the constituency, construction of Gram Prashasan Kendra (GPK), setting up of power house at Upper Durga Mandir area, setting up of wayside amenities such as cafeteria in the constituency to boost tourism, adequate electricity supply and replacement of old transformers for uninterrupted power supply and beautification of Rateypani Bazaar.

He further announced the distribution of house allotment orders under Chief Minister’s Rural Housing Mission for 3,000 households along with establishing an Organic Collection Centre in the constituency.

Additionally, the CM also assured to place the request for the extension of North East Rural Livelihood Project [NERLP] in Sikkim before the Government of India.

With regards to health sector, the Chief Minister informed the public that the State Government has procured 31,000 cervical cancer vaccines for girls aged between 09 to 14 years and that these would be provided free of cost. He also shared his plans of transforming Sikkim into breast and cervical cancer free State.

In the education scenario, the Chief Minister urged the students of the constituency to take advantage of the various schemes of State Government for them and appraised the students to avail free technical education in institutions such as CCCT-Chisopani and ATTC-Bardang.

Similarly, he added that the presence of technical and engineering colleges in the State will widely benefit the students which will aid socio-economic development of Sikkim, he said.

Furthermore, he urged the progressive youth of the State to start the innovative practice of branding every village in Sikkim under unique labels to attract tourism to their respective areas.

The Chief Minister further called upon the public to embrace afforestation thus upholding the sanctity of a Green State. Additionally, he appraised the Forest Department to plant varieties of flowering and fruit bearing trees along the roads and encouraged the public to take up the role of guardians.

The CM also delved on the peaceful environment prevalent in Sikkim and called on the people to inculcate a sense of ownership in maintaining this peace and harmony.

On Organic Farming, the Chief Minister urged the youth to create an oasis of Organic Farming entrepreneurs and become job-providers rather than remaining job-seekers.

Demands were placed by the representatives of Phong Secondary School, Chuba Rammeng Perbing Phong Zilla Territorial Constituency, Maneydara Nagi ZTC, Pamphok Mamring ZTC, Tanzi Rateypani ZTC and NERLP respectively.

During, the course of the program the Chief Minister was felicitated by ASHA, AWW and Zilla and Gram Panchayats of the constituency for the Chief Minister's commitment to uplift the state in domestic as well as in global arena.

The Chief Minister was accompanied by Ministers, MLAs, Zilla Members, Chairmen, Department officials and the public.

The Chief Minister is scheduled to attend a programme at Ravangla tomorrow.

[with additional inputs from IPR Deptt, GoS]