Sunday, February 5, 2023

State needs to generate its own revenue: Rio

Staff Reporter

Nagaland chief minister Neiphiu Rio re-emphasized on the state to be able to generate its own resources in order to meet the colossal challenge to bring all-round development, create infrastructure and provide services to the people.
He said this while addressing the inaugural programme of the State’s first shooting complex of the Nagaland Shooting Sports Association (NSSA) at the Multi Disciplinary Sports Complex (MDSC) Dimapur.
Rio maintained that unless the state generated its own resources, it would be difficult to create more facilities.
He said even funds provided by the Centre was not sufficient to pay salaries, pensions, debt serving and exigencies owing to the poor financial position of the state.
The chief minister reiterated that people need to pay tax to the government so that the revenue generated could help run the government smoothly, take up development projects, maintain road infrastructure etc.
In trying to illustrate this point of taxation for development, the chief minister cited the case where the state government had dismantled check gates across the state and which affected collection of revenue by municipal and town councils that resulted in the civic bodies not being able to pay salaries to their employees.
Rio also dwelt at length of the proposed sports complex (MDSC) which remains incomplete even after decades. He said the project was undertaken without budgetary allocation and later the state government approached the Planning Commission (PC) for help. He said the PC (under the UPA government) agreed to sanction Rs.10 crore annually and increase the amount subsequently. However, after the NDA came to power at the Centre, it replaced the PC with the NITI Aayog and the funding for MDSC had also stopped.
Rio said the state government, despite its own financial constraints paid the liabilities to the tune of Rs.20 crore and that the contractor was asked to complete the project.
In order to continue with the MDSC, Rio said the government was confident of working out a plan to rope in corporate houses to obtain funds under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).
The chief minister also lauded the Nagaland Shooting Sports Association (NSSA) for taking up the responsibility to conduct the much-needed shooting range and naming the indoor facility in memory of late Temjen Toy– then chief secretary and the first president of NSSA. Rio said such facilities provide the right platform for the youth to take up shooting as a sport.
Rio pointed out that Nagas love guns but that ‘gun culture’ was a totally different culture from sports and therefore urged upon the participants to remain disciplined.
In his brief address, DGP Nagaland and NSSA president T. John Longkumer lauded former NSSA president late Temjen Toy for being instrumental in forming the association and in gratitude the NSSA decided to name the shooting range after late Temjen Toy.
Nagas have a rich history in shooting (hunting) and were also traditionally fond of guns. The DGP expressed optimism that shooting sports will certainly take off in Nagaland.
The DGP also claimed that the shooting range was of Olympic classification and will be fitted with electronic shooting target systems.
John expressed optimism that the shooting range will be converted into a world class range before the next North East Olympic to be hosted by Nagaland.
The DGP informed that there were 11 district shooting associations and 23 Rifle Clubs affiliated with NSSA and that the affiliations from the remaining five districts was under process. The shooting complex has both 50 meters and 10 meters indoor range.
Others who attended the programme include Rouvi Toy, wife of late Temjen Toy, principal secretary to CM AS Bhatia, secretary Youth Resources & Sports Wezope Kenye, director YRS Akumla Chuba and others.
The programme was chaired by NSSA honorary secretary Shalo Khing, invocation offered by council chairman, Association of the Gorkha Baptist Churches Nagaland, Robert Aley, and vote of thanks was delivered by NSSA secretary general, Neilasa Sopfü.

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