Thursday, June 13, 2024
North East

Meghalaya CM defends Autonomous District Councils, calls for streamlining performance

SHILLONG, May 16: Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma reiterated state’s stance on preservation of Autonomous District Councils (ADCs) dismissing proposals to abolish them despite concerns over their administrative efficacy. In recent statement, Sangma emphasized pivotal role played by ADCs in safeguarding cultural heritage of Meghalaya.
“District councils play important role in protecting cultural heritage of state. If administration is not up to mark. It does not mean it should be abandoned.” stated Chief Minister Sangma. He underscored enduring value of ADCs in Meghalaya’s governance landscape.
Meghalaya, despite status as full-fledged state for over 50 years continues to maintain three ADCs. A testament to enduring importance attached to these institutions in local governance, Sangma advocated for streamlining performance of ADCs. He urged enhancing their revenue generation capabilities rather than contemplating their dissolution.
The debate surrounding existence of ADCs periodically resurfaces, often fueled by perceptions of administrative burden juxtaposed against cultural preservation mandate. Proponents argue that these councils remain essential to protect distinct cultural identity and traditions of Meghalaya’s diverse populace.
On question of extending term of Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council (KHADC) and Jaintia Hills Autonomous District Council (JHADC), Sangma refrained from providing definitive answer. Cabinet had previously extended their tenure by six months. This began in March to facilitate ongoing delimitation exercise. Sangma indicated that any decision would hinge upon findings of this exercise.
“We will see once we get report. All will depend on it.” Sangma remarked. He maintained cautious stance on issue.
Discussions regarding augmentation of ADC seats are underway between state government and Union Ministry of Home Affairs. Sangma expressed hope that draft bill addressing this matter would be presented in upcoming parliamentary session.
The last elections for both KHADC and JHADC took place on February 27, 2019. The vote counting concluded on March 2. This marked significant juncture in ongoing discourse. It surrounded role and composition of ADCs in Meghalaya’s governance framework.
(Courtesy: Sentinel)

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