Much could have been done in raising power generation, rues CM
BY OUR STAFF REPORTER
GUWAHATI, May 20: Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Wednesday said the State has made rapid progress in all fields during the 14 years he has been at the helm.
“In the last 14 years, 85 lakh people got employment in Assam. This includes self employment, along with those in government and private sectors,” Gogoi told reporters here on the eve of completing 14 years of his rule.
Justifying his government’s achievements, Gogoi said, “Per capita income has risen from Rs 13,500 in 2001 to Rs 49,500 now in the State. Amount of tax collection, bank deposits, loan to farmers, gross domestic product, etc. have all increased in the State. These are all indicators of the State’s progress,” adding, “But we should have done much more in the sector of power production.”
Gogoi said number of consumers of electricity in the State has risen from 9 lakh to 33 lakh in the last few years. “We can’t compare Assam’s development with some other developed States of the country. These developed States don’t have problems like floods, land erosion, insurgency and others being faced by Assam.”
On the fund cut by the Central government, he said, “We will run our State-sponsored schemes by any means but it will be really difficult for us to run the schemes which are funded by the Central government if it keeps on cutting fincial assistance.”
The Chief Minister further said, “During the UPA days, the foundation stone of the Rajiv Gandhi Petroleum Institute was laid at Sivasagar but the present Central government is now saying that it has no information about it. The Central government is also delaying the setting up of tiol Institute of Fashion in the State.”
On the Supreme Court verdict prohibiting photos of Chief Ministers and others in government advertisements, Gogoi said, “In my opinion, the Supreme Court should not get involved in such issues. If necessary, I will challenge the verdict in the court of law.”
On the High Court’s directive on bandh culture in the State, Gogoi said: “Banning bandhs is not easy. If we use force against bandh supporters, many will raise the angle of violation of democratic rights. We can stop the bandh culture only with the support of the people.”
The Chief Minister also said he will fight the 2016 Assembly elections in the State and the Congress will win it hands down.