Bhanu P Lohumi
Tribune News Service
Shimla, December 7
The six-day winter session of the Himachal Assembly commencing on December 9 at Tapovan (Dharamsala) is likely to be stormy. The Opposition Congress is gearing up to pin down the government on issues such as the Global Investors’ Meet, tardy progress of work on national highways and railway projects, relaxation in Section 118 of the Tenancy and Land Reforms Act for real estate, crime against women and financial mismanagement.
“The Rising Himachal Global Investors’ Meet was in the interest of BJP leaders only. The extravaganza would not bring investment to the state and various relaxations given to investors, especially in Section 118 of the Tenancy and Land Reforms Act for real estate, are tantamount to surrendering the interests of Himachal,” said Mukesh Agnihotri, Leader of the Opposition.
The ordinance promulgated a day before the investors’ meet, exempting entrepreneurs from the requirement of various approvals and inspection in respect of eight regulatory departments would spell doom, as it would be difficult and cumbersome to reverse illegal acts later, he said.
“We will raise the issues of the delay in the construction of 69 national highways, railway projects and a provision of air connectivity during the Assembly session. The BJP, while in the opposition, had accused the previous Congress government of ignoring development. The BJP has been in power for the past two years and it must show its report card on these crucial issues,” said Agnihotri, adding that the Congress “would not allow Himachal to be sold”.
The issue of crime against women and the recent incident of violence against an old woman in Mandi would also be raised. Financial mismanagement, which has forced the government to raise loans repeatedly, would be one of the major issues.
Meanwhile, the BJP will project the “successful” investors’ meet during which memorandums of Rs 93,000 crore were signed as a major achievement. The party will also harp on the victory in the two Assembly byelections, filling of thousands of posts of teacher, approval of an international airport at Mandi and various other projects and better law and order.
The Congress is also likely to raise the issue of the posting of police officers, who were suspended and jailed in the case of custodial death of the Gudiya rape and murder accused, Suraj. Rising prices and growing unemployment are other key issues that are likely to be taken up during the session.
Meanwhile, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Suresh Bhardwaj said, “We are fully prepared and all discussions will be allowed under rules. All questions of the Opposition will be answered and the achievements of the government will be highlighted”.
There will be two new faces in the treasury benches, namely Reena Kashyap and Vishal Nehriya, who won the byelections from Pachhad (reserved) and Dharamsala Assembly constituencies recently.
The Global Investors’ Meet was in the interest of BJP leaders only. The extravaganza will not bring investment to the state and various relaxations given to investors, especially in Section 118 of the Tenancy and Land Reforms Act for real estate, are tantamount to surrendering the interests of HP. — Mukesh Agnihotri, Cong leader
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