The Mizoram Legislative Assembly voted on Demands under portfolios of Nihar Kanti Chakma and Lal Thanhawla, concluding detailed discussion on the Budget for the year 2009-10. Demand for Grants submitted by 1). Nihar Kanti Chakma are Animal Husbandry - Rs.29,85,47,000, Disaster Management & Rehabilitation - Rs.8,39,65,000 and Sericulture - Rs.8,25,80,000 (Total -Rs.46,50,92,000 ) and 2). Lal Thanhawla includes Legislative Assembly - Rs.9,15,64,000, Governor - Rs.10,60,000, Council of Ministers - Rs.6,32,09,000, Vigilance - Rs.2,02,55,000, Excise & Narcotics - Rs.14,03,75,000, Finance - Rs.407,69,90,000, Secretariat Administration - Rs.96,86,43,000, Planning & Programme Implementation (excluding ICT) - Rs.35,52,92,000, GAD - Rs.49,51,90,000, Power - Rs.233,17,82,000 and Public Works - Rs.227,00,45,000 (Total - Rs.1081,44,05,000).

Altogether 17 Members participated in the discussion, where they underlined the need for proper implementation of NLUP - the flagship project of the government. While the ruling party members described the budget as development-oriented and a good plan for uplift of the poor, the opposition members were sceptical about the reduction in Plan fund of 18 departments, which they alleged were being diverted to meet the fund requirement for NLUP. The members also stressed the need for more attention towards AH&Vety and Sericulture departments, which provide additional income to many families. The need for better preparation in the event of natural calamities was also raised. Some members including Opposition Group Leader Dr.R.Lalthangliana complained of often facing neglect regarding accomodation & other facilities in Mizoram Houses.

Winding up the discussion on his demands, the House Leader Lal Thanhawla reiterated the government’s determination to fight corruption, which he feared had taken deep root in the state. Referring to the state financial position, he pointed out that the widening fiscal deficit gap could very well lead to tightening of funds as well as economy measures to be taken up. Reacting to doubts about implementation of NLUP, Lal Thanhawla made it clear that the government will not allow its flagship policy to fail at any cost and for which cooperation from all quarters including the church had been sought. In reply to the remarks regarding treatment meted out to MLAs in various Mizoram Houses, he said that he himself had been a victim many times and hence will certainly intercede in the matter. He also assured the House that an Inquiry Commission will be formed to look into the alleged issue of fresh LSCs in the Serkhan-Bagha and Hortoki-Meidum areas and FIR submitted in this respect will also be pursued. The House Leader also said that the government will give high priority to improvement of education quality in order to create substantial human resource in the state.

Nihar Kanti Chakma also clarified and reacted to various points raised by the members relating to his demands.

Five Starred Questions were answered during the Question Hour in the forenoon. In his reply to supplementary questions, Social Welfare Minister P.C.Lalthanliana stated that the draft Mizoram Prevention of Beggary Act would not be pursused since the Law & Judicial department was of the opinion that introduction of the Act in the state was not of immediate need. Replying to supplementary questions regarding Health & Family Welfare, Lalrinliana Sailo informed the House that Civil & District Hospitals would be gradually upgraded and Cardiology Unit as well as ICU in the Aizawl Civil Hospital would be renovated and necessary equipments procured.

The House Leader laid on the Table of the House a copy of  “The Statement on Six Monthly Review of the Finance Minister on the Fiscal Position of the Government of Mizoram for the Second Half of 2008-2009 (October,2008 - March,2009)”.


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