BY OUR STAFF REPORTER
GUWAHATI, January 24: Promises are made to be broken. This seems to be the dictum guiding Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi when it comes to fulfilling his budget announcements.
Preoccupied with his ministry reshuffle exercise for the past several months, Gogoi seems to have forgotten that the promises he made in the 2014–15 state budget need to be implemented for development of the state. But with only two months left in the fincial year 2014–15, most of the promises Gogoi made are likely to remain on paper.
In the last 14 years, the Chief Minister’s budget wish list has continued to grow longer but half of those announcements were never implemented on the ground. Many of those announcements/schemes/programmes would have met the hopes and aspirations of the people to a great extent.
In the 2014–15 state budget, the Chief Minister promised to set up the Assam Food and Civil Supplies Corporation Limited (AFCSCL), but it has not materialised so far. The setting up of the AFCSCL would have ebled ration card holders, most of whom are poor people, to get sugar at subsidised rates. It may be mentioned that the Assam government has not been getting sugar at subsidised rate from the Central government since May 2013 due to the non–existence of the AFCSCL, and the ration card holders in the state are feeling the pinch as they have to buy sugar at open market rates.
Another announcement in the 2014–15 budget was a new police academy to be set up for imparting the latest training to state police personnel, but no progress has been made in this regard. It was also promised that women cells would be set up in all police stations across the state but it remains an empty promise to date.
For the rehabilitation of erosion–hit people in the state, the government announced that a comprehensive scheme would be launched, but it never saw the light of day. The budget promise of building a cyber town to give industries chance to set up their shops under one roof has not got off the ground.
The budget promise of distributing blankets among 20,000 poor beneficiaries in this winter in each of the LACs is yet to be fulfilled by the government.
In the 2014–15 budget, the government also promised that all major roads, lanes and by–lanes of Guwahati would be illumited by installing streetlights, but many areas of the city continue to plunge into darkness as twilight descends.
The question arises: why make budget promises that are never fulfilled? The answer is: the announcements were made without vision and proper planning. So they never became a reality. And therein the insincerity of the Tarun Gogoi comes through loud and clear.