State gets celebration panel for 2022’s gala golden jubilee
49th Meghalaya Day observed with pomp
SHILLONG/ TURA/ JOWAI/ NONGSTOIN/ KHLIEHRIAT/ NONGPOH, Jan 21: The Meghalaya Government has decided to constitute a committee comprising leaders from the ruling and the Opposition sides, besides other stakeholders, to ensure that the golden jubilee celebration of statehood in 2022 becomes a gala affair. The decision was taken on the 49th Meghalaya Day, which was marked with a plethora of events across different districts of the state.
Chief Minister Conrad Sangma, on Thursday, batted for a befitting celebration of the 50th statehood day of Meghalaya next year, stating a year-long celebration should take place throughout the year and culminate on January 21, 2022.
“We have decided to put up a celebration committee which will constitute of different leaders from political parties, both ruling and Opposition, district councils, organisations and other stakeholders. We will ensure that it is a broad-based committee so that good inputs are generated from all sides for the celebration to be successful,” the chief minister said, while speaking on the 49th anniversary of statehood.
Informing that the state government will organise different programmes during the year-long celebration including competitions, activities at the block, district and state levels, he said it will be the endeavour of the committee to ensure an appropriate celebration.
Conrad added that it will also look into the different aspects of the future vision of the state.
“We will work towards laying the seeds and foundation for where we would like to see Meghalaya in the coming five, ten, fifteen and next 50 years. All these aspects, in a very broad manner, will be a part of the responsibility in terms of this committee and will be broad-based, carrying everybody along as this is a celebration of the state which will only be meaningful if we do it together,” the chief minister said.
Conrad, while conveying his greetings to the citizenry, said, “On this day, we should remember the sacrifices and vision of our leaders and forefathers; and keeping that in mind, we should ensure that we commit ourselves once again to the state and ensure that we take it forward by working together in a positive manner”.
GH moves in sync
Meanwhile, programmes organised at different venues by respective district administrations from all five districts in Garo Hills marked the celebration of the 49th Meghalaya Day.
In Tura, the occasion was marked by the Meghalaya Day Run and presentation of awards of recognition to citizens in a modest ceremony.
The annual Meghalaya Day Run saw immense participation by old and young alike. The run was flagged off by West Garo Hills Deputy commissioner Ram Singh, who also gave away the prizes to the winners later. Following the Meghalaya Day Run, an official gathering also took place at the Deputy Commissioner’s park wherein awards of recognition were presented to select outstanding citizens who have excelled in various fields of life. The awards were given by the DC along with Superintendent of Police, Dr Raghavendra Kumar MG, Tura Municipal Board Chairman, JD Sangma, and Nokma Council president, Skylance G Momin.
Some of those who received the awards included Chakseng D Sangma for social service, cooperative growth in rural development sector; Lt. Wefstar D Shira for social services, community development etc; Aileen K Sangma for entrepreneurship and food processing enterprise; Daisy Christine G Momin for social service, preserving and promoting traditional art and culture; and Tyrone D Brass for outstanding service delivery in education sector.
The occasion was observed in North Garo Hills at the Deputy Commissioner’s Office in Resubelpara where Deputy Speaker and local MLA, Timothy D Shira, was the chief guest.
Speaking on the occasion, Shira attributed the statehood achievement to the fathers of yesteryears, who had to go through many hurdles during the demand and ultimate creation of the state. He acknowledged that it was a proud day for every citizen to be able to reflect the transformational journey of Meghalaya.
Shira said that although the state is in a transitional period, many developments have taken place throughout the years since the attainment of the statehood. According to him, the creation of new districts, infrastructure development, upgrade of roads and connectivity are some of the few achievements of the state.
Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner, RP Marak, who also spoke during the programme, highlighted the ongoing developmental activities in the district.
In Ampati of South west Garo Hills, the occasion was marked by a blood donation drive at Ampati Civil Hospital, which was organised by the district administration in collaboration with the host hospital under the theme ‘Be a Blood Donor, Be a Hero-A Real One’.
Deputy Commissioner Ramakrishna Chitturi, speaking as the chief guest on the occasion, said that many people die due to unavailability of blood at blood banks due to the reluctance of many locals to donate blood. He added that although the district has storage units, the absence of local donors makes it dependent on government employees and BSF personnel when blood is needed. Therefore, the DC stressed on the need to encourage more locals and communities to develop this culture of donating blood and save lives.
Out of the total of 28 individuals who donated blood during the drive, 17 were from the BSF while the rest were civilians.
The occasion was also observed in South Garo Hills at the Deputy Commissioner’s Office in Baghmara, which was attended by District Superintendent of Police, Prianshu Pandey, who was the chief guest, besides others.
Moreover, as part of the Nasha-Mukt Bharat Campaign the District Social Welfare Officer and the District Sports officer jointly organised a Meghalaya Day Run on the occasion which was participated by a significant number of people from all walks of life.
The day was also marked by the felicitation of the senior citizens and the colourful cultural presentation from the various schools of the district.
The occasion was also observed at Williamnagar in East Garo Hills.
Like other districts, the Meghalaya Day Run was also organised by the East Garo Hills District Sports Officer collaboration with the district administration. The 10-kilometre run was flagged off by the Deputy Commissioner, Swapnil Tembe.
Prayer meet in WJH
In West Jaintia Hills, a multi-faith prayer meeting was organised as part of the celebration, which was partaken by various religious leaders and members of different faiths.
West Jaintia Hills Deputy Commissioner, LNS Dykes, chaired the celebration programme held at the Conference Room of DC’s office, Jowai.
The programme began with reading of the Bible scripture by Extra Additional Commissioner, MA Challam.
WKH DC recalls struggle
Meanwhile, the West Khasi Hills Deputy Commissioner, T Lyngwa, addressing the celebration of the statehood day at the DC’s office in Nongstoin, recalled the selfless struggle of the leaders and stated that their efforts will be cherished.
While underlining the problems faced by the people at that time, whether it was scarcity of water, poor road condition, electrification or others, he admitted that a lot had been achieved in the last 49 years, which has made life easier.
He, therefore, called upon the government officials to render their services with dedication for the prosperity of the state.
Joining the rest, Meghalaya’s Aspirational District, Ri Bhoi, also celebrated the occasion at the District Library Auditorium Hall, Nongpoh, in the presence of Nongpoh MLA, Mayralborn Syiem, Ri Bhoi Deputy Commissioner, RM Kurbah, besides traditional heads, village elders, teachers and students.
As part of the programme, a special award was conferred upon Anthony Syiemlieh, an MMA fighter who brought laurels to the district and the state by winning an international fight against during the recent Matrix Fight Night held at Dubai.
Moreover, the winner of the slogan competition ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ was also awarded. Also, certificate of appreciation was handed over to three employees of the DC’s office on the occasion.
Shylla reminisces endeavours
Meanwhile, Social Welfare Minister Kyrmen Shylla attended the statehood day celebration at Khliehriat in East Jaintia Hills.
In his address, Shylla, while recalling the history of the formation of Meghalaya, lauded the leaders who fought tirelessly for a separate state.
There are still many challenges and issues which the people of the district are facing, he said, while urging all government employees and the public to cooperate for the betterment of the district and the state.
The minister handed over certificates of appreciation to the local headmen of the district for their contribution and support in the fight against COVID-19. A cultural dance was also performed by the students of Jaintia Eastern College, Khliehriat.
After the programme, Shylla inaugurated the new DRDA Office building at Khliehriat East.