Along with the rest of the country, Mizoram also observed the 67th Independence Day across the state with Independence Day functions held across the length and breadth of Mizoram.
In the biggest Independence Day Celebration held at Lammual, Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla paid rich tributes to the freedom fighters and the leaders of the Freedom Struggle and called upon the citizenry to rededicate themselves to fulfil the dreams and aspirations of the founders of our mighty nation. In this Independence Day speech, the Chief Minister dwelt on various developmental programmes and recent achievements of the government.
Speaking about the flagship programme of the government – the New Land Use Policy, he said “the project has made significant impact on the economy by providing alternative and sustainable livelihood opportunities to farmers by reducing their dependence on jhumming. Packages of activities targeting commercial farming, primary processing, promotion of livestocks, pisci-culture, sericulture, plantation of cash crops and similar activities have already uplifted the economic welfare of the beneficiaries. Consequently, Mizoram has registered GSDP growth rate of 11% during 11th Plan period against the national growth rate of 7.8%. This remarkable achievement could be justifiably attributed to NLUP Programme. The per capita income for the year 2010-2011 at current prices is Rs. 50,956 which has shown a considerable increase; evidently the economy of the state is on the rise”.
On law and order situation of the state he said “the maintenance of law and order and security of the people of Mizoram have always been given paramount importance. There was no major incidence of crime and violence in the state during the past one year except the kidnapping of 5 (five) employees of Environment & Forest Department on 18.02.2013 by suspected cadres of National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT). They were later released on 29.2.2013 without payment of any ransom money after dedicated pursuit by SP CID (SB) team”.
Some connectivity projects the Chief Minister highlighted in his speech are - Rs.344.17 crores sanctioned under NEC Schemes for Serkhan – Bagha road (115Km), Ngopa – Tuivai road(113.50Km) and KDZKT road; connectivity to 164 nos. of unconnected villages under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) Scheme; upgradation of Serchhip-Thenzawl-Buarpui road (55Km) to be taken up under Externally Aided Project (EAP) at a cost of Rs.167.9 crores to be funded by Asian Development Bank through Ministry of DoNER; construction of road starting from NH-44A via Buarpui-Thenhlum – Phairuangchhuah - Chawngte to link Multi Modal Road at S.Bungtlang (350Km) and upgradation of Lunglei-Demagiri-Kawrpuichhuah Road (112Km) and Champhai-Zokhawthar road (30Km) under Mizoram State Road Project-II to be funded by World Bank at a cost of Rs.3,500 crores ($600 million).
On the power sector he highlighted that the P & E Department is taking up construction of 5MW Tlawva SHP near Khuangthing village at an estimated cost of Rs. 57.49 crores which is expected to be completed in 2015 besides taking up construction of 100KW each Hydel projects at Tuiriza and Tuiching at the estimated cost of Rs. 2.20 crores and Rs. 1.56 crores respectively which are expected to be completed by 2014. He said the department is also intending to take up construction of 3.50MW Kawlbem SHP from the year 2013-2014 at the probable cost of Rs. 49.60 crores. He also said that the 47th Meeting of Empowered Institution for Viability Gap Funding (VGF) scheme of the Ministry of Finance, Government of India, on 23.7.2013 approved 210 MW Tuivai HEP to be executed on Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode with Viability Gap Funding (VGF) support.
He also highlighted the achievements of other Departments as well. In conclusion to his speech he said “On this auspicious day, I appeal to all of you to re-dedicate yourselves to work unitedly for the progress and prosperity of our state and our country. Without clean and efficient government machineries and improved public service delivery mechanism, even the best laid plans and programmes will not benefit the people. We are willing to walk the extra mile to revamp and strengthen our administrative machinery. We must persevere, and be patient, as we slowly yet surely make our way towards a better future”.
On this occasion, the Chief Minister presented the Governor’s Gold Medal to seven policemen personnel and two firemen. He also handed citations to K T. Chungnunga and Larinzuali – winners of the Jeevan Raksha Padak Award. Besides these, he also handed the State Award to Meritorious and Outstanding Teachers to three teachers.
At the Governor’s At Home Reception held at Raj Bhawan, the Governor Vakkom Purushothaman honoured the Aizawl based 26 Battalion of Assam Rifles with the Governor’s Silver Salver in recognition of the unit’s outstanding operations against anti national operations and also for its dedicated military civic action initiatives.
It may also be mentioned that Sivagami Sundari Nanda, Director, Anti- Corruption Bureau, Mizoram has been awarded the President’s Police Medal for Distinguished Service while Rishi Pal, Supdt. Of Police, Security Unit, Mizoram and Manik Lal Das, Inspector, CID (Crime) have been awarded the Police Medal for Meritorious Service.