State’s people should develop at own pace: Pema

TAWANG, Sep 15: Chief Minister Pema Khandu said the people of Arunachal Pradesh should develop at their own pace, with safeguards in place to ensure their wellbeing.
Speaking at the first ever joint conference of the state’s anganwadi workers and ASHAs at Kalawangpo Hall here on Saturday, Pema opined that Jawaharlal Nehru’s Panchsheel could be used as a guiding principle for the policies to be pursued vis-à-vis the tribals.
He, however, lamented that the state did not receive proper hand-holding from the government of India “during its journey from NEFA to statehood, resulting in deteriorated work culture and development disparity in the state.”
The conference was organized by the Arunachal Pradesh Anganwadi Workers & Helpers Union (AAPAWHU), which is affiliated to the Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS). More than 500 anganwadi workers and ASHAs from various districts participated in it.
The chief minister said the time had come for the state to “remodel, rethink and reshape its development discourse with proper planning and policy reforms.”
Speaking on labour reforms, Pema said that even without any demands placed, the state government has enhanced the honorarium of 12,050 anganwadi workers and helpers to Rs 1500.
He announced an additional honorarium of Rs 500, which he said would be implemented from next month.
The CM also said that if additional enhancement is required “it will be examined and the matter brought to the cabinet.”
Considering the important role played by the ASHA workers, the CM informed that benefits have already been announced in the budget.
He also informed that the Centre is working on minimum wages for workers, and said it would be implemented in the state when it is announced. He said the state government would also work out a mechanism to regularize WCs and contingency workers.
Speaking on important initiatives of the state government, Pema said more than 1 lakh beneficiaries have so far benefited from the ‘Sarkar aapke dwar’ programmes being organised by the district administrations.
Dwelling on air connectivity, the CM said the Tezu airport would be made operational soon, as “the tender process is completed and finalized.”
He informed that the state government will also start its own aircraft services to connect the six ALGs in the state.
Lumla MLA Jambey Tashi, Arunachal Pradesh Workers’ Welfare Board Chairman Jalley Sonam, BMS national organising secretary Surendra Kumar Pandey, BMS NE in-charge Sunil Kirwar, and AAPAWHU president Yeshi Sonam also spoke. (CMO)