GUWAHATI, Feb 15 - Leader of Opposition in the Assam Legislative Assembly and Leader of the Congress Legislature Party Debabrata Saikia today alleged that the BJP Government in Dispur has stopped the distribution of bicycles among students in the tea garden areas.
“… during the period of the Congress Government, a scheme was launched to promote education in tea garden areas, especially for girl students, and to do so the Department of Tea and Ex Tea Welfare provided bicycles for students who had to cover great distance to attend high school. Accordingly, bicycles were allotted for various subdivisions and beneficiary students were selected by the headmaster concerned without any political intervention,” Saikia said in a statement.
He said that the selected beneficiaries list was approved by the Sub Divisional Tea and Ex Tea Welfare Board and bicycles were distributed.
“Unfortunately, after the change of the Government in Assam, the BJP Government has stopped distribution of the bicycles already purchased for the students, depriving the selected students of their rightful dues and also causing wasteful government expenditure by not distributing the bicycles among beneficiaries and keeping them in godowns,” Saikia alleged.
He said that the Minister for Tea Tribes Welfare “himself belongs to the Tea and Ex Tea Garden community,” but added that the minister, “in spite of being aware of the fact, has not taken any steps to cancel this decision.”
“I have already pointed out this matter to the minister on July 5, 2016, and as no action was taken on the matter, the same was pointed out to the Chief Minister on October 28, 2016. As no positive action has been noticed from the State Government, on February 6, 2017, I asked the CAG, Assam, to look into the matter and take suitable action,” Saikia said.
He added, “I condemn this anti-student action of the Government and demand that all the items including bicycles, etc., lying in various subdivisions and districts of the State meant for students, be distributed immediately.”
Saikia said that “the BJP Government, though it talks so much about working for Daridra Narayan, in practice it has not done so (sic).”