CM announces Rs 10 cr corpus fund for scribes

IMPHAL, Jul 16: Chief Minister N Biren has announced that an amount of Rs 10 crore has been sanctioned as corpus fund for the Manipur State Journalists Welfare Scheme.
He was speaking as chief guest at the 35th foundation day of evening daily Kangleipakki Meira held today at Mongsangei Konjeng Leikai.
After the welfare scheme for journalists was approved by the State Cabinet, the amount of Rs 10 crore was sanctioned yesterday and the same would be incorporated in the State budget, Biren informed.
N Biren who grew up as a journalist said that he too encountered many difficulties and extreme pressures from different quarters while he was a journalist.
He said that he was imprisoned at one point of time and he used to write editorials from inside the jail with due permission from the Court.
The Chief Minister went on to claim that he managed to bring unity among the journalist fraternity of the State when he served as president of the All Manipur Working Journalists’ Union (AMWJU).
Even though it appears that the present day journalists are little safer, they are still under immense pressure.
The Government, after taking due note that majority of the journalists do not belong to affluent families, decided to launch a welfare scheme for the journalist fraternity, he stated.
One primary objective of the incumbent Government is to remove from the minds of people the general notion that politicians are liars. To understand people’s wishes, grievances and aspirations, the People’s Day (Meeyamgi Numit) is held every month.
During its first 100 days, the Government has implemented some development programmes. But it is not the end, people are still suffering a lot. Most of the complaints highlighted during the People’s Days were about medical problems, Biren continued.
Just as the projects and functions of MOBC have been reviewed, the Government would review projects/schemes being implemented by Social Welfare Department.
Admitting that the recent flood was mainly caused by policy failures, the Chief Minister recalled that he took up Nambul Project apart from dredging Waishel Maril when he was the IFC Minister. But all the projects were executed with undue emphasis on contract works.
The State Government has been planning a project of dredging the beds of Imphal, Nambul and Kongba Rivers, Biren stated while appealing to all the people to dismantle structure built on river banks at their respective localities.
The Government and its Council of Ministers alone cannot bring the desired changes in the State.
All the people ought to share their responsibilities, he asserted.
The Chief Minister also distributed the 35th Kangleipakki Meira Journalist Awards.
The awards carrying cash incentives and certificates were conferred to Thongam Premchand of Poknapham, Babie Shirin of Ichel Express and Ningthoukhongjam Sanajaoba of ISTV News. While the Best IPR Personnel award was given to Pukhrihongjam Romesh, 80 year old Chirom Biren was honoured with the best hawker award.
Meritorious students were also felicitated at the gathering.
Capitalising on the gathering, the Eastern Arm Brothers donated Rs one lakh to Chief Minister’s Relief Fund for flood affected victims.
Speaking at the gathering, IPR, Works and RD&PR Minister Th Biswajit expressed keen desire for media to focus on enhancing quality rather than quantity.
He appealed to the media fraternity to disseminate only true, detailed and reliable information.
If any Minister or Government official is found committing misdeeds, the same may be published with evidence and all the details, he urged.
Speaking on reports about possible resignation of Parliamentary Secretaries, Biswajit who is also Government spokesman claimed that the move does not mean there is any dissent or disagreement within the Government.
The same move is based on a consensus so that the Parliamentary Secretaries can take more active roles in the activities of the State Assembly and improve governance.
CAF&PD Minister Karam Shyam, MLA Soibam Subashchandra and Kangleipakki Meira Chief Editor and AMWJU president Wangkhemcha Shamjai were also seated on the dais.


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