First Cabinet meeting in Tura clears five policies

25 review meetings held in a single day

TURA: The MDA government cleared five policies for the state during its first ever cabinet meeting in Tura on Monday with the most significant being the Meghalaya Community Participation and Public Services Social Audit Services Rules of 2017 that empowers citizens to ensure their entitlements reach them.
Earlier, in back to back meetings that stretched throughout the day, the cabinet ministers held series of discussions with their respective departments to review the developmental aspects.
In sync with the government’s motto ‘Cabinet on the Move’ Chief Minister Conrad Sangma told media persons that as many as twenty-five review meetings of various departments were taken up by the ministers during the day.
The rules for Social Audit Bill of 2017 approved by the cabinet during its two hour long meeting at the circuit house, chaired by the chief minister, will now ensure fifty percent of villages in the state getting government schemes are audited in a year. It will empower the citizens to seek their entitlements, pensions and other benefits.
The department of Community and Rural Development had sought approval to the draft rules to the original Act and the cabinet has approved the rules.
The cabinet through the Programme Implementation Department has also decided to aggressively implement systematic review of departments in every district.
For this, the cabinet has cleared the proposal to have one minister per district for one year to review the workings of the government departments in tandem with the district heads.
Another decision of the cabinet was on the amendment to Meghalaya Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Rules 2011 since education is one of the top priorities of the government.
This, according to Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong, who briefed the media after the cabinet meet, is in conformity to the amendment to central rules to Right to Education by the Centre.
Keeping in mind the problem of ever increasing urbanisation and its subsequent impact, the proposal on solid waste management of Urban Affairs department called the ‘Solid Waste Management Policy’ was also approved and it will come into force immediately.
With a view to address the problem of unemployment among youth which has gained alarming proportions in the state and to help the young entrepreneurs, the government has also cleared a proposal from Commerce & Industry department called the Meghalaya Start up Policy 2018 which is targeted at the youth.
Under this policy, individuals and societies will be able to avail a tax holiday and also get subsidy benefits of up to 25 per cent.
The cabinet also cleared the Meghalaya State Sports Policy 2018. The department presented the draft policy which the cabinet approved after fine tuning all aspects of the policy.
The next cabinet meeting of the government has been scheduled for Jowai in West Jaintia Hills, informed Tynsong.

Major decisions of MDA cabinet

r Amendment to Meghalaya Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Rules 2011 in conformity with the amendment to central rules to Right to Education.
r Approval to Meghalaya Community Participation and Public Services Social Audit Services Rules 2017 to bring transparency and accountability.
r One minister in every district for one year will hold systematic departmental review meetings with the district heads.
r Solid Waste Management Policy approved with immediate effect.
r Meghalaya Start-up Policy 2018 to help young and talented entrepreneurs.
r Meghalaya State Sports Policy 2018 cleared.

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