JORHAT, Dec 16: The state cabinet meeting, chaired by chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma was held at Jorhat Circuit House on Thursday evening. The cabinet took a slew of decisions for the state, the notable one being the creation of a separate cadre for prosecution to ensure that punishment is meted out to criminals.
The others were pertaining to construction of a major flyover in Guwahati, integration of bike taxis with aggregators, engaging young professionals in administrative work, strengthening the justice delivery system.
Briefing newspersons on Thursday night after the cabinet meeting at the Circuit House here, Sarma said that the cabinet has decided to strengthen the criminal justice delivery system to tackle crime more effectively by establishing a separate cadre – Directorate of Prosecution – headed by a director to see that cases are fought in a more effective way.
The chief minister said that there will be several deputy directors followed by
permanent posts of Public Prosecutors (PPs), special PPs, additional and assistant PPPs in the lower courts like other government jobs under a salary system. The posts in the districts would be transferable among the courts across the districts.
Sarma, while saying that lack of a separate cadre under a director of prosecution which many states have, will make sure that criminals get convicted.
All necessary rules will be made and CrPC will be amended in this regard and will be placed before the next Assembly session following which the bill will be sent to the President for her assent.
Sarma said that the cabinet also approved the decriminalisation of over 30 laws which were found to be redundant and created hurdles for various development activities. In this regard, several departments like Home, Transport, Forest and Environment, Revenue and Disaster Management, Industries, Finance and Irrigation will coordinate for the necessary works to be done.
Stating that this proposal (Decriminalising over 30 laws) would be placed before the next Assembly session, the chief minister said that the state government had already done away with criminal provisions of 300 laws that were found to be obsolete in the past session of the House.
The chief minister said that another decision was regarding giving official recognition to private two-wheelers to ply as taxis with and without registering as commercial registration by tying up with an aggregator and capping the rides of bike taxis without commercial registration to four trips in a day.
He observed that such provision could provide opportunities to youths including college students to meet their educational expenses.
In an aim to benefit the middle class, another decision taken was to enhance shared mobility in cities and towns by allowing carpooling service without commercial registration for private car owners and that they should tie-up with an aggregator.
The meeting also decided to set up a utility company for paying the tariffs and undertake maintenance of the streetlights in the cities and towns to ease the pressures on the civic bodies.
The work in this regard will start from Guwahati and Dibrugarh, the chief minister stated.
Sarma further said that the cabinet in order to meet the increasing requirement of power in the state, also decided to purchase 206 MW power from Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation Limited (UPPCL) and Neyveli Uttar Pradesh Power Limited (NUPPL).
The next decision was the construction of an elevated corridor (flyover) on GNB Road near Handique Girls’ College, Dighalipukhuri to Noonmati FCI Godown via railway station, having a length of seven to eight km, and an amount of Rs 923 crore has been allotted. Sarma stated that the flyover will directly connect the railway station and Noonmati.
Announcements for Jorhat
The chief minister further announced a package of projects passed for Jorhat district in the cabinet meeting.
Titled as ‘Envisioning growth for Jorhat’ the projects are – a flyover from Baruah Chariali to Bhogdoi bridge covering 1.5 km (AT Road), bridge over Bhogdoi river at Ejaroni Ghat (Teok), bridge at Jhanjimukh (Teok), upgradation of Dhodar Ali (Nakachari to Kakodonga bridge) and Borhola-KB Road, Jorhat under Assam Mala Road Project, Club Road, Jorhat, to be preserved as heritage road, embankment along Brahmaputra river at Loliti (Jorhat outskirts).
For health and education – enhancement of Jorhat Medical College and Hospital, a 100-bed Civil Hospital at Mariani, two government colleges at Selenghat and Dergaon.
For water supply – upgradation of Jorhat town water supply scheme by the Public Health and Engineering department by sourcing water from rivers.
Other infrastructure includes – modernisation of Jorhat Science Centre and Planetarium, construction of Chowk Bazar building and a Convention Centre having a 1000-seat capacity at Jorhat.
The chief minister disclosed that the proposed Convention Centre is expected to be constructed within a short period of time as he wished to chair the conference of DCs in 2023 at Jorhat.
Sarma further said that the government was contemplating on installing solar fencing at Hollongapar Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary under Mariani Range of Jorhat Forest Division in a bid to minimise straying out of elephants from the sanctuary to human settlement areas.
Earlier, before the cabinet meeting began, the chief minister released a book written by Tanuj Goswami with the title ‘Issues And Governance’ at the Jorhat Circuit House.
Goswami is a retired additional secretary of Assam government and a state resource person of Competition Council of India.