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Unfair comments from Sports Minister

Editor,
I was surprised and pained to read the statement of the Sports Minister as reported on page 3 of your paper dated 26th March, 2015.  While it may be true that the State Resource Group was formed in May, 2014, the notification of the same is yet to officially reach me. In fact, as the so called Chairman of the SRG, I was not even aware of the meetings held in June and July, 2014, much less attend either meeting.
I came to know about the SRG unofficially in December, 2014, when the Secretary of the SRG, Mr Clive Dunai, and I happened to attend the Christmas celebrations at Nongrim Hills. I was shocked when he verbally informed me about the existence of such a body. So, if the meetings in June and July 2014, were not convened by me as the Chairman, then who called for the meetings?
However, because I believed that the Sports Policy was important, I followed up the matter with Mr Dunai, based on the copy of the notification marked to him. After he informed me that a draft Sports Policy had previously been sent to the Government, I directed him to write to the Planning Department to know the views and comments of the different Departments so that we could take those views into account when I convened the next meeting of the SRG. Accordingly, a letter seeking the views was sent in January 2015. When no reply was received, I asked the Secretary to send another letter in February, 2015. I regret that I cannot cite the exact dates of the letters since Mr Dunai is presently in Pune. Suffice it to say that we still have not received any replies from the Government on the defects of the previous draft Sports Policy.
From my explanation above, it appears that the Government of Meghalaya, through the Sports Minister, has formed the State Resource Group without any intention to let it function. The absence of a Sports Policy has adversely affected the sports scenario in the State. An opaque cloud hides the functioning of the Sports Department, and neither the different Associations nor the sportspersons of the State know what are their entitlements. And, it appears this Government is not interested in bringing about clarity and transparency. I fear that if the present attitude persists, even the IIM will find it difficult to do it’s job, and may become just another scapegoat to shoulder the blame.
I sincerely hope this clarification will clear all doubts, since the Meghalaya State Olympic Association, and its constituent associations, are eager for a Sports Policy which will give direction and establish transparency in our State.
Yours etc.,
R.G. Lyngdoh,
Working President,
MSOA, Shillong.

What ails  Garo Hills

Editor,
As a frequent visitor to Garo Hills I find that the administration has become redundant. Ampati has become chaotic with a long bandh and in Tura the police are going round to check office attendance. It reminds one of a police state. There is no administration in large swathes of rural Garo Hills, so much so that people have lost faith in the Government. Let us look at other administrative lapses. Onion costs Rs.10 more than Shillong, same with potatoes and other food items. Cement costs Rs 100 more in Tura than in Shillong and even then one is not sure if one is being sold spurious cement. Costing and quality of building materials are at odds but no one cares. Power is erratic and many a time Garo Hills is in darkness. Water supply is always a problem during summer because the pumps have been changed only on paper. Of course the administration will go on hyper drive inspecting water bodies rather than setting their house in order. To fight militancy one must get one’s act together first. Administration must be at its peak and governance must be excellent. There is no room for corruption and nepotism.
Yours etc.,
A John,
Via email

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