Gangtok, Dec. 12: Sikkim chief minister Pawan Chamling made a slew of promises today on the 12th anniversary of the Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) government.
At a programme organised to mark the occasion, the chief minister said the people of the state can now look forward to a Sikkim state human rights commission, a directorate of monitoring and evaluation, a directorate for capacity building and vocational training and a 40-fold hike in the gram panchayat budget. Chamling made these announcements while addressing a group of senior government officials gathered at Chintan Bhavan for the programme.
The Chamling-led SDF government was first voted to power on this day in 1994 and is currently in its third term.
The chief minister, who spoke at length on the achievements of the government, said the setting up of a state human rights commission is in keeping with its commitment towards social justice and human rights. The directorate of monitoring and evaluation, he said, would check the implementation of the various schemes and programmes of the government, while the directorate of capacity building and vocational studies would ensure skill enhancement.
“The government has been spending more than 70 per cent of the state budget for rural development, and now the panchayat funds will be hiked 40-fold under the 11th Five Year Plan, which will take effect from 2007,” he said.
He said while there had been tremendous achievements in the last 12 years, there was still a lot more to be done to take the state forward on the road to development. He asked the people to take stock of the progress made and decide what more has to be done.
Referring to the Opposition in the state, the chief minister said these parties were not engaged in ideological politics.
“They are only making personal attacks and levelling wild and baseless allegations. The Opposition has no principles here and you find the state units of the CPM, the BJP and the Congress, unlike anywhere else in the country. All of them are working with the sole intention of giving a bad name to the SDF.
As part of the programme, a photo exhibition, organised by the state information and public relations department, was held in the lobby of Chintan Bhavan.