Gangtok, 21 Feb:
Chief Minister Pawan Chamling today reiterated that Sikkim has become the most secure State for the business community under the SDF government of the past 25 years. He highlighted that through these years, there have been no incidents of extortion, suppression or injustice meted out to the business community even as these were common incidents during earlier regimes.
He was speaking as the chief guest at a meeting of the All Sikkim Democratic Trader’s Front of the ruling SDF party at Singtam Bazaar on Thursday.
Addressing the business community, the CM mentioned that business community of Sikkim was ignored on three watershed moments through history. While sharing that the government cannot give Sikkim Subject Certificates any more even if it desires, he mentioned that the SDF government has instead made a law to give residential certificates to the left-out people with 26 April 1975 as the cut-off date to give protection and rights to old settlers.
He added that anyone can take out the residential certificate on production of supporting documents of proof.
Mr Chamling mentioned that opposition parties have been making an issue out of a non-issue on the residential certificates to mislead the people.
He stated that those who arrived in Sikkim after 1975 and have trade licenses will also get the rights at par with residential certificate holders of the State.
He announced that now residential certificate and trade licence holders will get enlistment, StartUp loans and government benefits and grants in bazaar areas.
The CM also announced to regularise the services of harijans in bazaar areas who have been working for more than 5 years and asked them to submit the required documents. He also announced construction of smart parking in every bazaar.
He mentioned that the government has been constructing multi-storied buildings under social housing to provide houses in urban areas. He also spoke about the various initiatives and welfare measures taken by the SDF government in the interest of the business community
Mr Chamling stressed that the SDF government has provided equal protection, respect and political rights to the business community of Sikkim and added that the SDF party has made Mayors, Deputy Mayors and councillors from the business community of Sikkim.
He mentioned that some political parties from Sikkim and outside have been trying to instigate the business community of Sikkim. On the same, he urged members of business community not to fall for misinformation and false assurances.
He urged them to see and evaluate the works of the SDF Government in providing equal rights and protection to them in Sikkim instead.
Mr Chamling mentioned that business needs peace, security, opportunities and a suitable environment to prosper. In this context, he added that business in Sikkim has increased manifold due to the good governance, peace, security and development ensured by his government.
He alleged that opposition parties have been trying to terrorise and threaten the business community of Sikkim and asserted that unrest in Sikkim will first affect people in transportation and then hoteliers and businesses.
He urged the people of Sikkim to come forward to maintain peace and security.
While mentioning that to live a life of peace and respect was the biggest contribution of the SDF Government for the people.
On the Limboo-Tamang seat reservation issue, the CM mentioned that the SDF government has provided tribal status to Limboos and Tamangs of Sikkim and it has been working tirelessly to reserve seats for them as well.
He added that the State government has provided a 40-seat formula to the Centre to reserve seats for LTs in the State Assembly and the government of India has also agreed in principle.
Mr Chamling stated that the opposition does not have any formula for seat reservation and has been demanding that five seats for LTs be given from the existing 32 seats but has never explained how this would be fair on the 60% of the population which is neither ST nor SC nor belonging to the Sangha which will be left with only 12 seats. He added that it was totally unconstitutional and undemocratic and not justify for majority community of Sikkim.
He alleged that the opposition parties were running after power. On the same, he urged the people to try and understand the powers behind the opposition in Sikkim.
Mr Chamling mentioned that the delay in reserving LT seats was to due to Opposition leaders and their letters to the Centre.
He added that the “masters” of SKM party and Hamro Sikkim Party were responsible for the delay in seat reservation with the letters to Central ministries and case in the Supreme Court.
He also commented that doctors, contractors, businessmen and retired employees have become leaders in a party just near the elections exposing their opportunism.
He added that after losing the 2014 elections they went back to their respective professions and now are returning to politics for the upcoming 2019 election.
Mr Chamling stressed that the politics needs sacrifices and dedication and it was not a 5-year business.
“I have been in the active politics for the last 40 years and has been working as a legislator for 35 years in the interest of Sikkim and its people,” he said. On the same, he asked the people to see the track record of a leader in chronological order.
Speaking on the newly inaugurated infrastructures and facilities at Singtam, the CM stressed that the people of Singtam have to take the full responsibility for these and take the full benefits. He also assured to fulfil all demands and issue placed by the people in the meeting.
Earlier in his welcome address, area MLA, Agriculture Minister Sonmnath Poudyal stated that Sikkim has witnessed huge development and progress in 25 years of SDF government and added that the SDF party has established the democracy in the true sense in the State.
He added that Sikkim has enjoyed inclusive and sustainable development due to the effective leadership provided by the CM which has been appreciated and recognised all over the world.
Mr Poudyal stated that opposition parties have been doing seasonal politics, becoming active around elections and trying to mislead the people. He expressed confidence that SDF will win all 32 seats in the upcoming elections as the people of Sikkim have been standing firm with the party.
The meeting was also addressed by ASDTF general secretary, Manoj Gupta and Bharati Sharma. On the occasion, Khamdong-Singtam constituency, Singtam Nagar Panchayat and different organisations also felicitated the CM.
Earlier, the CM inaugurated the newly constructed vegetable market-cum-parking, Shiloh Christian Church of Sikkim and Deputy Regional Transport Office at Singtam.