CS meets industrial unit heads to foster better understanding

Gangtok, 26 Jul [IPR]: A meeting of Chief Secretary AK Shrivastava with heads of industrial units in the State was held at the conference hall of Tashiling secretariat today.

The meeting also had the presence and participation of Additional Chief Secretary, Commerce & Industries Department, Dr Thomas Chandy, Secretary, Labour Department, SP Subba, Joint Labour Commissioner DS Kunwar, Director, Commerce & Industries, Tashi Chopel, senior officers of Commerce & Industries Department, and heads of all industrial units operating in the State.

This was the first meeting of industrial heads with the Chief Secretary.

The Chief Secretary, in his opening remarks, stated that the meeting was convened to foster a better understanding between the industrial units and the Government, and address aberrations and impediments, if any, on the path of growth.

He lauded the industrial units for their contribution to the state and the country and assured to strengthen areas where the Government can better its role as a facilitator.

The Chief Secretary sought information from the industry plant heads on the following issues:

1. The details of the industrial units, factories and other establishments and purpose for which they have been set up.

2. The initiatives taken by the industrial plants under Corporate Social Responsibility.

3. Contribution of the plants in area development (round about roads and other infrastructure).

4. Details of workers of all categories and their positions in the industrial units (local and non-local).

5. Labour Contract System - alternative for the system if the Government puts a ban on it.

6. Details of perks and facilities provided to the staff over and above their monthly salaries as notified by the State government.

7. Details about transportation for workers and storage/warehouse facilities for finished products, both within Sikkim and Siliguri.

8. Companies should provide information about promotional avenues for workers from skilled to supervisory level.

9. Pollution control measures.

The industrial plant heads submitted the point wise response to the Chief Secretary and highlighted additional areas of concern that need to be addressed.

After lending a patient hearing to the points put forth by the Plant heads, Chief Secretary Shri A.K. Shrivastava assured that there will be no miscommunication or any gap in communication between the industry and the government. He said that an efficient mechanism will be established to ensure healthy communication and speedy action.

The Chief Secretary made it clear that a uniform system and policy guideline on Corporate Social Responsibility should be put in place so that the contribution of the Industries is beneficial for the society as a whole and that their contribution is valued and acknowledged. He welcomed the suggestion from the industrial heads that a high-level Committee should be constituted by the State Government to draw up a policy guideline for CSR which should be followed mandatorily by all the industrial units operational in the state.

The Chief Secretary expressed his satisfaction at the success of the meeting, the first of this kind, and said that the deliberations from the meeting will be conveyed to the Chief Minister. He further stated that he would meet the head of all the units who could not attend today's meeting and create the premises for the final meeting of the Industrial heads with the Chief Minister.

The Additional Chief Secretary, Commerce & Industries Department, in his closing remarks, reiterated that the industries in Sikkim are doing laudable service both within the State as well as nationally.

He gave the example of how pharmaceutical products manufactured in Sikkim are prescribed to people living in different parts of the country.

He stressed on the need to demystify the notion that the industries are here solely to make profit. He called for the need to understand the functioning and role of these industries and acknowledge their contribution to the GSDP of the State. He expressed his gratitude to the Chief Secretary and all the industry heads for their participation and fruitful deliberation.

The meeting concluded with vote of thanks proposed by Joint Labour Commissioner.