The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Governor sets up funds straight-talk

Ranchi, May 26: Governor Syed Sibtey Razi has said he would like to hold talks with the government on non-utilisation of funds meant for execution of Centre-sponsored schemes.

Razi has made his desire known to chief minister Arjun Munda during their meeting a few days ago. Munda is learnt to have agreed to the meeting.

Sources said the discussions could be held any day before the monsoon session of the Jharkhand Assembly that has been convened from June 10.

“I basically want to hold a meeting to discuss how we can get more funds from the Centre for different schemes that could be helpful in the development of the state and make life easier for the people. The chief minister’s approach was positive as well and he agreed to the meeting,” Razi told The Telegraph during an informal chat at Raj Bhavan this afternoon.

Razi, who has been regularly meeting people from different walks of life at Raj Bhavan, was of the opinion that extension centres of the Birsa Agriculture University (BAU) be opened at village level so that the villagers, especially the peasants, benefit from the research and development work being carried out from time to time at the institution through the “lab-to-land” concept.

“I want the labs to reach out to the farmers at the village level. Scientists at BAU have developed 49 species of seeds and the technology has been transferred to the government. The technology should be utilised for developing agriculture in Jharkhand. I have been meeting delegations of farmers all these days at regular intervals and they listed out many problems like availability of cold storage, transportation and roads, which can be easily sorted out with a little bit of planning. The farmers told me they needed big ponds instead of the small ones,” he said.

The governor feels BAU could play the role of the nodal agency for the execution of Centre-sponsored schemes related to agriculture.

Raj Bhavan is also keen to improve the plight of widows of police personnel killed in anti-insurgency operations in the state. “The role of the government should not be confined only to paying compensation. The rehabilitation aspect should also be looked into on a priority basis,” he said.

Razi cited the example of one such widow who was being harassed by her in-laws who were eyeing the compensation amount that she got from the government. Her in-laws wanted to marry her off to their younger son.

“She was being forced to marry him apparently because her in-laws had an eye on the compensation. Our role should not be confined only to paying compensation. There should be a wing to look after the welfare of the relatives of those who laid down their lives while performing their duty for the country,” he said.

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