What are MDA Govt’s priorities?

Every Government needs to set priorities and goals, else it will be tilting at windmills and achieve no measurable goals. For the general public, good roads with proper drains, a responsive and accessible healthcare system, clean water supply and good educational infrastructure are critical. After that comes power, agriculture & allied activities and employment generation. It will be educative to know how many youth have been employed in sectors other than the government on account of the State having created its engine of progress. Unemployment is causing heartburns among our youth and many have taken the easy way out and turn to substance abuse.
The tragedy that besets Meghalaya is that no government has set its priorities since 1972. If roads are a priority then the State needs to list out the important national highways and ensure these are taken up by the national agencies within a definite timeline. Internal roads everywhere are in a mess. There is no single model to look up to. The Power sector is one messy deal and sooner than later the MeECL will have to be privatized if we are to get regular power supply. There’s a limit to how much loan a state run Corporation can avail when it is lagging behind in repayment of previously availed loans. Meghalaya is just biding its time like a plane that runs on autopilot.
Some people are in the Government to serve their personal interests and even if they don’t make it in 2023 they and their families are sorted for the rest of their lives. Such people have used the Government without any concern about its public image. They have nothing to lose after all. What also stands in the way of Government setting out priorities is that some of the most important Departments such as Health, Education, PWD, PHE, Agriculture, Art & Culture have no policy to guide them. While there is a case for not being imprisoned by policy to the point that one cannot move out of it, flexibility is called for when a certain policy has outrun its course and needs to be reimagined. But to start without any policy is to allow arbitrariness to set in. Arbitrary decision-making always lends itself to manipulation. Look at the Health Department for instance. There is no transparent policy of allocation of medical seats to students that have cleared NEET. Normally toppers should be allowed to opt for a medical college of their choice, keeping in mind the reservation policy. But this has not happened in 50 years of statehood. Perhaps the New Year’s Resolution for the MDA Govt would be to put together a think-tank comprising development specialists, (both rural and urban), economists, educationists, city planners, agriculturists, et al to tour the length and breadth of the state and come up with policy proposals.

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