CM welcomes elected Cong ADC members
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, June 25 2010: Welcoming the newly elected members of the Autonomous District Councils, who were sponsored by the Congress party today, Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh has assured that once the process of forming the Council is finalised, necessary process of devolution of power would be taken up as done in other States.

A reception function in honour of all the 108 newly elected Councillors including four women who contested on the Congress ticket in the recent elections to the six Autonomous District Councils in the hill districts of Manipur was organised by Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee at Congress Bhavan here today.

In the 24-member Councils, 18 Congress Councillors were elected from Churachandpur, 14 in Senapati, 17 in Tamenglong, 21 in Ukhrul, 17 in Sadar Hill and 19 in Chandel Autonomous District Council.

Of the four elected women Councillors of the party, two are from Ukhrul ADC and one each from Churachandpur and Tamenglong ADCs.

The Chief Minister, MPCC president, Speaker and Ministers presented gifts to the newly elected Councillors during the reception function.

Speaking at the occasion, Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh informed the gathering that Hills Dept has made arrangement for oath taking of all the elected Councillors of different political parties at Khuman Lampak at 9.30 am tomorrow.

While appealing to all the Council members to attend the oath taking ceremony, which would be conducted by their respective Deputy Commissioners at six different places, the Chief Minister also expressed satisfaction over securing absolute majority by the Congress party in all the six District Councils.

The Chief Minister further informed the gathering that a committee headed by the Chief Secretary as the chairman has been examining the details related to devolution of power to the Councils which would be on par with other States.

The State Govt has already studied the first report of the Committee.

Extension of every possible assistance have been approved so far.

However, with regard to financial power, the Committee has been entrusted to study the matter more carefully so as to prevent any possible clash of interest between the MLAs/Ministers on one hand and the Council members on the other, he said.

Reiterating that the Autonomous District Council Act can be amended over and over again if it is essential, the Chief Minister observed that only those persons who can give lessons on the Act have been elected in the election.

However, there is the apprehension that there may be clash of interest at the time of electing the Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Council, he added.

He also called for working together for development of the State and its remote hill areas.

A stable Council should be formed and show development to the people, he exhorted.

The election to the Autonomous District Councils had been conducted under a definite objective of the Government to ensure democratic rights to the people, the Chief Minister added.

MPCC president Gaikhangam observed that the election to the Autonomous District Councils in the hill districts of Manipur could not be conducted for more than 20 years following conflicting demands with some groups insisting that Sixth Schedule should be implemented while some other groups pitching for elections of the local bodies.

The State Government finally took a definite decision on holding the election to the Autonomous District Councils after the Government of India gave a strong instruction that elections to the local bodies in the hill districts should be conducted.

He also called upon the newly elected Councils not to belie the trust of the people and work for the development of the society.

Assembly Speaker Dr S Budhichandra, MP of Outer Manipur Parliamentary Constituency Thangso Baite and many other Cabinet Ministers also spoke at the occasion.