GUWAHATI: The State Cabinet has cleared the decks for introducing the Cow Protection Bill in the Budget Session. The Cabinet has approved the Bill.
Addressing the first Assembly session of this Government, Governor Prof Jagdish Mukhi said, "The Government will bring a cow protection Bill that will envisage imposition of a complete ban on transportation of cattle outside the State, and those found guilty will face stringent punishment."
In his address to the OCs (officer-in-charges) two days back, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma went on record asking the police officers to adopt zero-tolerance against the transportation of cows. He also said that the government neutralized cow smugglers in a month.
Information and Public Relations Minister Pijush Hazarika on Thursday spelt out a slew of decisions taken by the State Cabinet – right from cow protection Bill to giving tourist spot status to the Shiva Temple at Sipajhar.
The other Cabinet decisions, according to Hazarika, are –
(i) When there are inter-state boundary disputes, miscreants from the neighbouring States do lodge cases against the officers of Assam for preventing them from carrying out their activities on the Assam side. Such officers have to appear before the courts in the neighbouring State headquarters or other towns at their own cost. Since these officers have cases slapped against them for their action while performing duty, the Cabinet decided that the government should bear their expenditure for appearing before the courts.
(ii) Assam Public Service Commission (APSC) recruits the teaching fraternity for engineering colleges and polytechnic institutions. Delay in the recruitment process often hampers classes. To do away with this problem, the Cabinet decided to set up a recruitment board under the Assam Engineering Service Requirement Act for teacher recruitment.
(iii) The Irrigation Department in the State is messy in implementing projects. There are irrigation projects without seeing the light of the day even after their completion. The ailment in the department is such that three different divisions – mechanical, civil and electrical – work on the same projects. And they work very badly as a team. If one of the three divisions completes its work, the other two don't. Now the Cabinet decided to entrust the projects to only one division to make them more accountable.
(iv) As of now, calamity-affected people living on government land don't get any compensation for the damage they suffer. However, the Cabinet decided to pay compensation for natural calamity damage to bona fide people living on government lands also.
(v) The Cabinet decided that the unemployed youth will have to register names in employment exchanges online instead of the existing manual registration.
(vi) As part of the government's administrative reforms, the Cabinet decided to merge the Pension and Public Grievances Department to the Administrative Reforms and Training Department.
(vii) To project the historic Shiva Temple at Sipajhar as a tourist spot, the Cabinet decided to hand over 160 bighas of government land around the temple to the temple committee.
(viii) The Cabinet decided to rename 'gaon burhas' as 'gaon pradhans', besides raising the minimum age limit of 25 years for the post to 30 years. The upper age limit for the post is 65 years.