Meghalaya seeks assistance from centre for funding different projects under “Special Central Assistance”.

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Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma called on Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman along with Speaker Metbah Lyngdoh in Delhi and sought assistance from the Government of India for funding different projects under “Special Central Assistance”.

Chief Minister briefed the Union Minister on the progress of works for Water Supply Scheme in Tura, Nongstoin and Greater Shillong, construction of new assembly building, up-gradation of health infrastructure and setting up of residential schools.

The State Government has requested for additional sanction of around 200 cr for ongoing projects in the State.

“The work is in progress and we are confident that it will be completed as per schedule. The State Government has already invested an amount of Rs. 100 cr from its own resources and is in urgent need of an additional 150 cr for making the project operational by 2022,” the Chief Minister said.

He also drew the attention of the Union Finance Minister to intervene and issue advisory to all banks to make SHG portfolio a part of their key performance indicators.

“During Covid pandemic, SHGs in Meghalaya have played a major role in ensuring cash flow at the grassroot level and ensured access to finance to the low-income groups. Hence, SHGs have a major role to play in terms of taking financial services to the last mile populations. Since Meghalaya has a low penetration of bank branches in the rural areas and as such the SHG network can help bridge the gap in providing the basic financial services,” the Chief Minister said.

On Tuesday, he also called on several other ministers including Union DoNER Minister Dr. Jitendra Singh, Rail Minister Piyush Goyal, Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda, amongst others.

The Chief Minister and Speaker also called on Union Education Minister Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank and briefed him of the ongoing construction of the National Institute of Technology (NIT), at Sohra, which has been halted due to a paucity of funds. Chief Minister has requested the Union Education Minister to release additional funds to complete the building. It may be mentioned that NIT, Sohra requires an additional 258 cr to be completed.

He also called on Union Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda and apprised him of the ongoing development projects in the state.