KHADC trade license fees

Editor,

I recall reading in your esteemed daily a report last year attributed to Executive Member of KHADC Paul Lyngdoh saying that the trade license fees had not been enhanced since 2005. He was trying to justify the steep rise in the fees. I think the statement is misleading. As a license holder myself, I can vouch for the fact that since 2008 at least five times the fees have been enhanced.

To be specific, in 2008 my firm’s fee was Rs 5000; the following year it was raised by another Rs 500 to make it Rs 5500; in 2011, the license fee became Rs 8000; in 2015, it was revised again to make it Rs 13,000. Then, in 2019 when Paul Lyngdoh was EM in-charge trade, the jump was abnormally high at Rs 20,000!

Therefore, either the EM is wrongly informed by his office or he is suppressing the truth. In any case, a four-fold hike in trade license fees in a span of12 years is most unreasonable, especially at a time when trade and commerce have suffered no end because of COVID pandemic.

In the same report, Lyngdoh had claimed that by enhancing the fees and brining about systemic improvement like biometrics, police verification, photo shooting of the licences in the Council office etc., there would be no harassment to the traders. May I ask, has it helped in plugging loopholes? Has corruption completely vanished? And what about the untold harassment meted to the applicants? It seems, regardless of any foolproof system, the license-seekers are here to suffer financially and mentally.

I therefore urge upon the authorities to reconsider the latest rate revision and put an end to harassment so as to give some relief to the traders.

Yours etc.,

Name withheld on request.

Via email

Lest we forget

Editor,

I was walking with my friend in Khyndai Lad on Friday and when we saw those banners demanding ILP, we end up having small talk about the issue. Then my friend said that in these trying times, the pressure groups should also raise the issue of price rise. She jokingly remarked that since potato ends up in her tiffin almost every day, the pressure groups should also fight against the rise of the price of potatoes. She knows the inflationary trends since she regularly visits Iewduh. She opened up my eyes to the stark reality and grim situation we’re living in today.

We’re living in inflationary times! We’ve never experienced such kind of price rise where the prices of almost all goods and services have gone up. About a month ago a taxi driver narrated a story about a person who works in a departmental store in Rynjah. The person was in a dire situation since taxi fare was eating up most of his meagre income. He told the driver that there’s no point of going to work since at the end of the month, almost all the salary is spent on traveling expenses.

Hopefully things get better and prices of essential goods and services stabilize and return to normal levels. But we must also remember that hyper-inflation is like an epidemic in itself and it can debilitate and ruin an entire nation. In the recent past, Zimbabwe’s economy was debilitated by hyperinflation for a long period of time. Right now, Argentina is in dire straits. The debt situation has reached uncontrollable levels and this has aggravated the inflationary crisis. In 2019, the inflation rate hit its highest level in three decades.

Closer home, the people of Mizoram have been living in hyper-inflationary times for a very long time. When I visited Mizoram a few years back, I was shocked ti find that almost all the essential goods were being sold at double the actual rates. And lest we forget, an economic crisis and hyperinflation were two of the main causes that led to the rise of Adolf Hitler. Adolf Hitler’s rise to power began in November 1923 and that was when Germany’s hyper-inflation reached its highpoint.

Yours etc.,

Gary Marbaniang,

Via email

An earnest appeal

Editor,

Through your esteemed daily I want to draw the kind attention of all concerned to an urgent matter. The final semester examinations of NEHU undergraduate courses were conducted in the month of October 2020.  Though there were uncountable issues faced by both teachers and students during the examination, the entire teaching fraternity of different colleges came forward and played active roles in making the first ever undergraduate ‘online examination’ conducted by the university happen. The process of evaluation started late, though, teachers tried their best to meet the deadline of October 30, for declaration of results. However, till date the final semester results of only a few subjects have been declared. Students, parents and teachers are still waiting eagerly for declaration of the results of the remaining subjects.

 Unfortunately, there were many universities whose deadlines for submitting final semester mark sheets for admission into Master degree programmes were in the month of November. Many of our students cleared the entrance examinations of those universities, but forfeited their seats only due to delay in declaration of the results by our University. Helpless students are contacting their clueless teachers to enquire when their results will be declared! To add to the worries, many universities have fixed last dates for submission of mark sheets of final semester examinations in the first week of December for admission into their Master’s degree programme.  At this point of time, it will be meaningless to discuss as to who is responsible for the delay in announcing the results, but it is time to think about the future of our students- the very reason why all these educational institutes exit.

Through your esteemed daily, as a concerned person may I request all, including teachers, office staff, administrators and officers of colleges and the university, kindly to sacrifice some extra hours from their busy schedule to complete any task, if yet incomplete, in order to declare the results of the remaining subjects at the earliest. We must keep in mind, every other day is a deadline for some of our students to submit their marks to some institutions for higher studies and any further delay in declaration of results will deprive them of the opportunities to get admission into those institutions.  Hope we all will go the extra mile in the interest of our students.

Yours etc.,

Devajyoti  Bokolial

Shillong-1

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