Chandigarh, October 18 – Haryana Chief Minister, Mr. Manohar Lal today said that village level Social Audit Committees would be set up in the State to ensure transparency in the development works. He said that the bills of various development works would be presented before these committees and the payment of only those bills would be made which would be approved by these Committees.
Mr. Manohar Lal was addressing a well attended public meeting after laying the foundation stone of shifting and modernization of Sugar Mill at village Dahar in district Panipat today.
The Chief Minister said that the Social Audit Committees would comprise of village Sarpanch, Panch, ex-Sarpanch and retired government officers who would check the bills pertaining to the development works. He said that this would not only ensure transparency in development works of the government, but also keep a check on corruption. He made it clear that he would not tolerate corruption at any cost and urged the people to lend their support in this endeavour so that entire amount released by government spent only on welfare works. He said that former Prime Minister, Mr. Rajiv Gandhi used to say that out of Rs one released by the government, only 15 paisa reaches to the people. If the entire one rupee is spent, the development could be increased by seven times, he added.
While describing today as a historical day for village Dahar and the area, he said that with laying the foundation stone for the shifting and modernization of Sugar Mill, 25 years long pending demand has been realized. He said that a sum of Rs 270 crore would be spent on the shifting and modernization of this Sugar Mill. He said that crushing capacity of this Mill would now be made double that is from 1,800 tone cane per day (TCD) to 3,500 TCD thus benefitting the farmers in a big way as they would be able to take their entire produce of sugarcane to this Mill. He said that besides the crushing of sugarcane, 18 MW of electricity would also be generated in this Mill. Apart from this, the production of Ethanol would also be done.
While establishing an instant chord with the masses, the Chief Minister questioned that as to why the previous governments did not pay any heed to this demand of the area as it was in the larger interest of the farmers. Majority of farmers have small land holdings ranging from two acres to five acres and have limited income. He said that he understand the problems of such farmers as he himself belong to a farmer’s family and have only two acres of land as out of the total three acres he had donated one acre for a social cause.
The Chief Minister said that the State government has taken a number of steps to increase the income of farmers. He suggested that the instead of banking upon only on traditional crops, the farmers should adopt alternative farming like horticulture, floriculture etc so as to increase their income. Apart from this, they could also opt for poultry farming, fish farming and bee keeping through which they could earn more on less available land. He urged the farmers to become progressive and assured them that the government is with them in all circumstances. He said that besides the government, the farmers should also understand their responsibility and consider the Sugar Mills as their own to ensure that the Mills are in profit.
While referring to the prices of sugar, he said that this time the prices of sugar slashed down in the market up to Rs 2,300 per quintal from Rs 2,800 per quintal. He said that the State government had been concerned about the financial position of sugar mills and therefore released the payment of Rs 300 crore to the Cooperative Sugar Mills in the State. He said that the government has also released a payment of Rs 175 crore to three Private Sugar Mills. Referring to the untimely rain and hailstorm in different parts of the State early this year, he said that the government had distributed unprecedented compensation amounting to Rs 1092 crore to the affected farmers which is more than the total amount of compensation given in the last 15 years.
On the demands raised by MLA Panipat (Rural) Mr. Mahipal Dhanda, the Chief Minister announced various development projects worth Rs 60 crore which included construction of small roads, setting of PHC at Khotpura, polyclinic for cattle, rejuvenation of historical place Kala-Amb and construction of museum, construction of Nohra drain, linking of Noorwala from National Highway, setting up of Nandi Gram in Badoli. On the demand of upgradation of schools, the Chief Minister said that the Education Department has decided to upgrade 350 schools in one year. He said that four schools from each Assembly Segment would be upgraded under this scheme. He also announced to give Rs 10 crore to Panipat (Rural) assembly constituency and Rs five crore each to remaining three assembly constituencies of district Panipat namely Panipat (Urban), Israna and Samalkha for development works.
Earlier, the Chief Minister inaugurated Railway over Bridge on Delhi-Ambala Railway Line on Jatal road constructed at a cost of Rs 27.81 crore and SC/ST Wing of Government Industrial Training Institute, Naultha constructed at a cost of Rs 450 lakh. He also laid the foundation stone for the widening and strengthening of road from GT-Road Siwah from Chachpur. A sum of Rs 1886.32 lakh would be incurred on this work.
Speaking on this occasion, Cooperation Minister Mr. Bikram Singh Yadav said that after the shifting and modernization of Sugar Mill at village Dahar, the farmers of the area would not have to depend on other sugar mills.
Haryana Transport Minister, Mr. Krishan Lal Pawar said that the previous governments in the State have always misguided the farmers of the area on the issue of shifting of this Sugar Mill. But it was only the Chief Minister, Mr. Manohar Lal who has decided to shift this sugar mill in the interest of farmers of the area.
MLAs namely Mr. Mahipal Dhanda, Mrs. Rohita Rewri and Mr. Ravinder Machroli also spoke on this occasion.