Hon’ble Governor Shri Ganga Prasad lays foundation stone of Rajya Sainik Board’s Office-cum-Guest House

Gangtok, 26 Feb (IPR): Governor Shri Ganga Prasad laid the foundation stone of Office-cum-Guest House of Rajya Sainik Board here in the capital today in the presence of Minister, Building & Housing, Shri D.T. Lepcha. Also present in the function were Chief Secretary, Government of Sikkim, Shri A.K. Shrivastava, Secretary, Building & Housing Department, Shri R.B. Thapa, Secretary, Rajya Sainik Board, Col (Retd) D.N. Bhutia, and other officials.

Upon arrival, Governor Shri Ganga Prasad was received by the Minister, Chief Secretary and other officials and was briefed about the activities of the Rajya Sainik Board by Secretary Col D.N. Bhutia before the laying of the foundation Stone. Secretary, Building and Housing Department, Shri R.B. Thapa, gave the technical briefing of the upcoming infrastructure.

The Sainik Rest House Cum Office will be built in a total area of 2.866 acres at an estimated cost of Rs. 613.27 lakhs. Built on a floor area of 14035.2 sq ft, the facility will comprise of the Secretary’s office/room, officer’s room, staff hall, clinic, kitchen, dining hall tradesman’s room, caretaker office, visitor’s lounge and washrooms in the ground floor, while the remaining three floors will have guest rooms, dormitory hall, general kitchen, linen rooms, and multipurpose hall.

The Governor was welcomed with shawl, floral bouquet and traditional khadas by Family of World War II Veterans, Gallantry Award Winners, Veer Naari and Everesters. The Governor individually met and interacted with each member of the audience.

Addressing the programme, the Governor paid tribute to the brave jawans and ex-servicemen who have dedicated their lives to the service of the nation. He also paid his respect to World War Veterans, Gallantry Award Winners, Veer Naari, Ex Servicemen and Serving Personnel, and brave individuals who have scaled Mount Everest, many of whom were present in the program. He said that it is because of the selfless service of the brave jawans that the citizens of the country can enjoy peace and security. He added that the nation is progressing in every front because of the vigilance of the army. He added that the army is committed to serve the nation even in dire circumstances.

“For them, mother and motherland are supreme and protection of the two is their prime duty,” he said.

Governor Shri Ganga Prasad lauded the positive initiative of the State Government in envisaging this Rajya Sainik Board Guest House cum Office and for allocating adequate financial resources for the same. He said that the infrastructure once complete will be a huge asset for the Rajya Sainik Board. The Governor suggested that the Government should consider having special classes taken by Ex-Servicemen in schools and colleges so that students can listen and learn from their inspiring stories.

The Governor also remembered the 43 jawans who lost their lives in the recent terrorist attack in Pulwama District of Jammu and Kashmir and paid his tribute to the families of the martyrs. He said that India is a powerful nation and believes in its capabilities. He reiterated that enemies of the nation will not be spared.

Earlier, Secretary, Rajya Sainik Board, Col (Retd) D.N. Bhutia, in his welcome address, highlighted the various welfare incentives by the State and Central Government to Ex Servicemen, serving personnel and families.

Sikkim to host the National SC-ST Hub (NSSH) Conclave at Chintan Bhawan

Gangtok, 25 Feb (IPR): The State of Sikkim will host the National SC-ST Hub (NSSH) Conclave on the 26th of February here at Chintan Bhawan in Gangtok. The NSSH is an initiative of the Ministry of MSME, Government of India, to provide professional support to SC-ST Entrepreneurs to fulfill the objectives of 4% procurement from CPSEs as per the mandate of the Public Procurement Policy. The hub is providing hand-holding support to SC-ST MSEs through finance facilitation, e-tendering support, CPSE connect, market linkages, and development of new entrepreneurs to participate in procurement process.

This was informed in a press conference held at the conference hall of Udhyog Bhawan in Tadong today. The press conference was jointly addressed by Principal Secretary, Commerce & Industries Department, Dr. Thomas Chandy, and former MLA and National Working President, Forum of SC and ST Legislators Parliamentarians, and Director General, Dr. Ambedkar Chamber of Commerce, Mr Inder Iqbal Singh Atwal. Also present in the press conference were Branch Manager, National Small Industries Corporation Limited, a Government of India Enterprise, Mr Peter Thawngneihchina, and his colleague, Mr Hemanta Kumar.

It was informed that similar conclaves have been held recently in all the States including all the North Eastern States and Sikkim will be the last State to host the Conclave in this round. The conclave aims to bring together CPSEs, Industry Associations and State Government on a common platform and deliberate upon steps to be taken to fulfill Public Procurement Policy mandate for SC-ST entrepreneurs. It aims to understand how NSSH can collaborate with State Government and work together at the ground level to augment the capabilities of existing SC-ST entrepreneurs. There will be interactions with Industry Associations and Incubators to understand their expectations about NSSH programme while also on-boarding them to play a larger role.

The Ministry of MSME has taken several initiatives under the hub with an objective to increase participation of SC-ST MSEs in Public Procurement Policy i.e., State conclaves awareness campaigns, etc. Therefore, a database of SC-ST candidates has been developed. NSSH has set up Call centre for outbound calling process to validate the database of SC-ST participants of State Conclaves, UAM, SPRS, SMAS, etc. As a result, data of more than 4000 SC-ST MSEs has been verified as is being shared by CPSEs.

In addition, more than 16,000 SC-ST MSEs benefited through SMAS, SPRS ad PCRS schemes under National SC-ST Hub till date. The Hub would thus aid in strengthening market access/linkages, mentoring, capacity building, leveraging financial support schemes, and sharing industry best practices. In addition, the Hub would facilitate activities such as maintaining MSME Database, Vendor Development Programmes, Mentoring and Capacity Building, Finance Facilitation, Consortia of SC-ST Suppliers, Marketing Assistance, Private Affirmative Action, Collaboration with States, Awards and Felicitation and Management Information System (MIS).

The one-day conclave will be graced by Hon’ble Governor of Sikkim, Mr Ganga Prasad, as chief guest in the presence of host of other dignitaries. The conclave will have participation of entrepreneurs from Sikkim and other States, Ministry officials, Banks, and senior students of Colleges and Universities.

Legal Services Camp

Jorethang, 23rd Feburary: District Legal Services Authority (South) and Taluk Legal Services Committee (South) in coordination with the Sikkim State Legal Services Authority organized a Legal Services Camp at Mazitar Bazar Compound, South Sikkim today.

The purpose of the program was targeted to spread awareness about welfare legislations, various schemes and to strengthen the community’s access to the schemes being implemented by the Legal Services Authority and other Departments of the Government. The program aimed at identifying and connecting people to welfare schemes to ensure that fruits of the welfare schemes are passed to the eligible people. The program also looked upon understanding the legal needs of the people addressing their legal problems by giving appropriate legal advice.

Today’s program focused mainly on NALSA (Legal Services to the Victims of Drug Abuse and the Eradication of the Drug Menace) Scheme, 2015 and NALSA (Legal Services to Victims of Acid Attack) Scheme, 2016. The gathering were also disseminated about HIV/AIDS, Childline Services and the establishment of Sanjeevani Rehab Society at Namchi, South Sikkim and its services available to the people.

The program was launched by the Ld. Chairperson, DLSA (South) Ms. Jyoti Kharka in the presence of the Secretary DLSA (South), Ms. Urvashi Pradhan, Dr. Anusha Subba, Medical Officer, C.H.C. Jorethang (South), P.I. Roshan Gurung, Jorethang (South), Mr. Passang Tshering Bhutia, General Secretary, Drishti (NGO), Staffs of Drishti (NGO), Staffs of Childline, Staffs of Sanjeevani Rahab Society, Ms. Devika Rai, Panchayat President of Sorok Shyampani, Para-Legal Volunteer, and the local gentries of Mazitar Bazar Compound.

There were around 117 people who attended the program. The attendees interacted with the officers and the representatives of the various Departments present to address their problems and procured appropriate advice and guidance.

CS reviews progress of preps for VP’s visit to the State, expresses satisfaction over preparedness

Gangtok, 22 Feb (IPR): Chief Secretary, Shri A.K. Shrivastava, chaired a coordination meeting today to review the progress of preparation for the ensuing visit of the Vice President of India, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, to Sikkim from 25-26 Feb, 2019. This was a follow up of the meeting held under his chairmanship on 11 Feb wherein all concerned departments and Central Government agencies were assigned specific responsibilities.

Addressing the meeting, the CS expressed his satisfaction at the state of preparedness at every level. After taking a detailed stock of the action taken from the agenda points of the previous meeting, he reviewed the minute to minute programme of the Vice President.

Upon arrival to Sikkim on 25 Feb, the Vice President will attend an official function at National Research Centre for Orchids in Pakyong where he will interact with the scientists. Thereafter, he will attend lunch hosted by Chief Minister of Sikkim. This will be followed by a programme at Raj Bhawan where the Vice President will lay the foundation stone of Centre for Training and Demonstration for Bamboo and Sustainable Structures.

Shortly thereafter, the Vice President will launch Pranab Mukherjee’s chair for Sustainable Development of ICFAI University which will also have the participation of visiting delegates from New Delhi. The Governor and Chief Minister will call on the Vice President in the evening.

On 26 Feb, the Vice President will attend the foundation stone laying programme of office-cum-guest house of Rajya Sainik Board in the capital. He will wrap up his State visit with the official programme at Sikkim Manipal Institute of Medical Sciences in Tadong.

The meeting discussed in detail the preparations in each of the four venues. The CS said that this was the last meeting before the visit of the Vice President and urged all the heads of departments and agencies and institutions involved to make the visit a success.

Present during the meeting were DGP and heads of various departments, officer from the army, Vice Chancellor (Sikkim Manipal University), Joint Director (ICAR-NOFRI), District Collector (East), VC (ICFAI University, Sikkim), Director (Pakyong Airport), Director (NRC Pakyong) and other officials of the State Government.

North district students selected under CMMSS meet outgoing DC, North

Mangan, 22 Feb (IPR): Students from North District who recently secured the scholarship to study in the best schools in India through the Chief Ministers Merit Scholarship Scheme (CMMSS) met with the outgoing District Collector, North, Shri Karma R. Bonpo. Also present during the occasion were Joint Director, Human Resource Development Department, Smt Delak Pradhan, and other officials.

Parents of the selected students expressed special gratitude to Hon’ble Chief Minister Shri Pawan Chamling for providing an opportunity to the students from weaker economic background to pursue their education in the best international schools in the country. The scheme provides full government scholarship to Sikkimese students from Class VI till they pass out from the best public schools within and outside the State. They parents said that it was a dream come true for them as their children would now be studying in schools like Scindia School Shigally Hills International School and credited the Chief Minister for this landmark scheme.

It may be mentioned here, 11 students from North Sikkim secured the scholarship and the top four positions in the entrance exams was bagged by students from North Sikkim. The North District Administration had conducted a special coaching camp for six months to 25 meritorious students of the district. These students were provided residential facilities at Singhik Secondary School and the District Collector was instrumental in arranging the residential facilities.

The entire funding for the boarding facilities was provided by Teesta Urja Power Project. The HRDD North selected the best teachers from different schools of North District for imparting the coaching to the students. The teachers put a dedicated effort of six months and also stayed with them in the hostel to teach the students and to bridge their learning for them to be successful.

The District Collector, in his address to the students, congratulated the students for their success and also thanked the teachers behind their success. He urged the students to work hard and make good use of the life changing opportunity provided by the government.

Office of the CEO conducts workshop for political parties of the State

Gangtok, 21 Feb (IPR): The office of the Chief Electoral Officer, Sikkim organized an Orientation Programme for upcoming general election 2019 to all the political parties of the State here at the conference hall in Baluwakhani today. The main objective of orientation was to give message and information regarding upcoming General Election and its process to all the political parties in the State.

The orientation programme was chaired by Chief Electoral Officer (CEO), Shri R. Telang, which was attended by IGP Law and Order, Shri Gyanendra Kumar Verma, Additional CEO, Smt. Roshni Rai, District Collectors of East, North and South, Superintendent of Police from all four districts and representatives of various political parties.

During the programme, resource person, Shri Yadav K Sharma, briefed in detail about the Model Code of Conduct which is a set of guidelines issued by the Election Commission of India for conduct of political parties and candidates with respect to speeches, polling day, polling booths, portfolios, election manifestos, processions, etc.

Orientation workshop held for Media Persons and State/District MCMC teams for the upcoming General Election

Gangtok, 21 Feb (IPR): The orientation workshop for Media Persons and State Level and District level Media Certification and Monitoring Committee (MCMC) teams for the upcoming General Election 2019 was conducted at the conference hall of the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer at Baluwakhani today.

The workshop organised by the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer had the presence of Chief Electoral Officer (CEO), Shri R. Telang, DPO, EDZP, Shri Yadav Sharma, as the resource person, officials from IPR Department and Election Department and media persons from all districts.

The workshop aimed at familiarising media persons including State level and District level Media Certification and Monitoring Committee (MCMC) teams with various facets regarding media role for the upcoming general election 2019 such as monitoring of advertisement materials, certifications, roles of the Committee, etc.

Resource person, Shri Yadav Sharma, briefed the gathering on Election Planning, use of Information and Communication Technology in electoral process, menace of paid and fake news, etc. He further highlighted on the crucial role and functions of media persons and State and District Media Certification and Monitoring Committee for the upcoming election.

Speaking during the workshop, Chief Election Officer, Shri R. Telang, urged the media persons to deliver the best possible service to the people and ensure smooth and successful election in the State. He asked for cooperation from all the media representatives in conducting smooth and fair elections.

Inauguration of Children’s Film Festival to commemorate 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi

Gangtok, 21st Feb (IPR): The inauguration ceremony of Children’s Film Festival was held at Manan Kendra today. The film festival which is being held from 21-23 Feb is being organized by Children Film Society, India in collaboration with Cultural Affairs & Heritage Department. The Film Festival is to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.

Chief guest of the event was Secretary (CA&HD), Mrs. Ambika Pradhan, along with Secretary, Ecclesiastical Affairs Department, Mrs. Samten Dolma, as guest of honour,  Special Secretary (CA&HD), Mrs. Vidya Subba, and other officials.

Secretary (CA&HD), Mrs. Pradhan, in her speech appreciated the coordinator and the technical team and said that the screening was to celebrate Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary as his love for children was deep and abiding. She also informed that the three-daylong Children’s Film Festival was entry free and that anyone could come for the screening.

She stated that the programme was to showcase Gandhiji’s love for children as to him a child’s love was very precious.