Conrad highlights importance of South Garo Hills  

TURA: Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma has highlighted the significance of South Garo Hills district in the economy of the state, despite it being termed as one of the most remote and backward districts, pointing out its share in mineral royalty and the importance of its forest cover which propelled the 15th Finance Commission of the country to increase the budget allocation for Meghalaya.

The chief minister was speaking at the 30th death anniversary observance of Meghalaya’s first chief minister Captain Williamson A Sangma at Baghmara, district headquarters of South Garo Hills, on Sunday where he unveiled a plaque of Late Captain Sangma and laid the foundation for construction of a new building complex for the Captain Sangma memorial college.

“South Garo Hills generates the highest revenue for the government as far as coal royalty from Garo Hills is concerned and because of the dense forest cover of South Garo Hills, East Garo Hills and East Khasi Hills, the 15th Finance Commission has accorded increase in allocation of budget for the State in its tax devolution for the State,” announced Conrad Sangma.

Assuring the people of the region of continuous development, the chief minister said, “South Garo Hills is very important for the MDA government and we will ensure that concerned effort continues to enhance development in the district.”

He informed that in the past two years, the MDA government has taken up ambitious projects for the district including the Baghmara Water Supply Scheme, extension of Baghmara Civil Hospital, New Circuit House in Baghmara, construction of National Highways in the district, development of tourism infrastructure, amongst others.

The chief minister unveiled the new bust of Captain Williamson A. Sangma erected at the Captain Williamson Memorial park in Baghmara in presence of Education & Home Minister Lahkmen Rymbui, MLA of Baghmara Samuel Sangma and MLA of Siju Rongara Rakkam A. Sangma.

A memorial prayer service, laying of floral wreaths by dignitaries and maharis, guard of honour by the Meghalaya Police was accorded to remember and honour the founding Chief Minister of Meghalaya.

Terming Capt Sangma as the “father of the A’chik”, “father of the State” and “father of the council”, Conrad K Sangma thanked all the members of the organising committee for making their continuous effort to ensure that Capt Sangma lives amidst us forever.

“As a child, whenever Capt Sangma use to visit us, I use to always salute him…Therefore, it gives me immense pleasure and a sense of honour to be here today to once again salute Capt W. A. Sangma. Even though he may not be with us, I think his memory, his work and his love for our people and the State, will always remind us of him and his memory will live on,” said Chief Minister in his address.

He said that the youth of Meghalaya should be reminded of the qualities and the great contribution and sacrifice made by Capt Sangma for creation of Meghalaya as a State. “If we truly want to respect and honour Capt Sangma, we have to imbibe his ideals and dedicate and work for our State and our people,” he said.

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