From Our Special Correspondent
Silchar, Feb 2: The Fince Department of Assam has launched a programme, seeking suggestions for the state’s budget for the year 2018-19 from the common people. The programme initiated by Fince Minister Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma has been launched simultaneously at select educatiol institutes in Kamrup (Metro), Kamrup, Dhemaji and Golaghat districts on January 30. The programme intends to cover 12 other districts, covering 42 schools, colleges and universities over a period of one week. People can share their budget ideas through two government websites, https://assam.mygov.in and http://fince.assam.gov.in by February 16.
The state government has also decided that Assam Budget 2018-19 would be an e-Budget, instead of the conventiol paper-based one, the release said. Budget copies are generally printed for use by MLAs, officials, media and people. But everybody would be able to access the e-budget in a computer or mobile phone. Assam Budget 2018-19 will also lay significant stress on girl child, differently abled and elderly people, the release added. With this noble idea of reaching out to commonest of the common people, specially students, an awareness program was held at the conference hall of Gurucharan College on Thursday under the aegis of Fince Department, Government of Assam.
At the beginning Prof Jaydeep Bhattacharya, Convener of the programme, welcomed the dignitaries and invited the guests on the dais. He explained the objectives of the meeting and urged upon the participants to come forward with their valuable suggestions. Prof Ashes Bhattacharyya, Vice Principal of the college, expressed his satisfaction at the holding of such meeting and conveyed his gratitude to the authority for choosing this centre of higher education as one of the venues in south Assam. The focal theme was Assam Budget 2018. Isfiaq Ahmed, Joint Secretary, Fince Department, S Lakshman, IAS, Deputy Commissioner of Cachar, and official Nilkamal Das represented the government who launched the programme of this kind for the first time in this valley.
The programme generated avid interest among the students and the conference hall was packed to the capacity. S Lakshman at the beginning spelt out the importance of understanding budget and its implications which have a far-reaching effect on our daily life. Budget is prepared not on figment of imagition, rather it is intended to promote growth and development of the state. He added budget is necessary and “we are well conversed with process of how we go with expenditure incurred in family matters.” He explained why the government has taken such initiative.
The only objective is to make it people-friendly with the participation of stakeholders specially the student. It is an initiative first of its kind, never taken up in any other state of the country. Isfiaque Ahmed mentor of the programme with the help of power point presentation outlined the whole exercise of budget in a lucid manner. Every nuance of the budget was dealt by him in a phase manner that it readily caught the imagition of the audiences. An interactive session then followed with volleys of questions and suggestions coming from the enthusiastic student participants.
An enthusiastic Pankaj Sinha stressed upon the setting up of more industries in the valley in order to solve the unemployment problem. Goutomi Kar suggested creation of business hub, exploring the river ways up to Chittagong port. Padma Lakshmi Bhattacharjee felt it is apt to levy surcharges heavily on tobacco products to minimize its consumption. Rashmita Choudhury suggested extra vigilance to check misappropriation of fund by corrupt officials. Kudrat Khan opined “we should enhance quality of domestic products so that we could be able to capture intertiol market more profitably.”
Isfiaque Khan took note of the views put forth by the participants. Dr Monoj Paul, principal, Women College, observed that sans infrastructure development, all the exercises for the socio-economic uplift of the valley would be a futile exercise. After the interaction, a quiz was hosted for promotion of budget and it was a nice candid session with a lot of questions and Dr. Sarbani Dutta, senior faculty of department of commerce, quite creditably handled them. The winners of the quiz competition were presented with token gifts as a mark of appreciation. The awareness program ended with vote of thanks by senior faculty of department of anthropology, Prof. Asoke Kumar Gupta Roy.