SHILLONG, June 8 – Meghalaya’s plan size has been fixed at Rs 3,939 crore by the Planning Commission for the year 2012-13, which is an increase of Rs 1,212 crore or 44 per cent from the last fiscal.
During a meeting between the Chief Minister Mukul Sangma and Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, Montek Singh Ahluwalia the annual plan size was fixed at the Union Capital last evening.
In the meeting, the Planning Commission urged the State Government to take steps to reduce the number of school children dropping out of their studies, officials said here.
Meghalaya has a high school dropout rate and reports suggest the figures are the worst amongst the States in the country. The Annual Status Education Report (ASER), 2011 for the State said in Meghalaya the school dropout rate in the age group of 15-16 years is about 46.5 per cent. The drop out rate is higher than the national average.
The Commission pointed out that the issue of untrained teachers must also be tackled on a mission mode so that the education sector is revamped.
However, the Planning Commission lauded the State Government’s effort in reforming the power sector. Ahluwalia congratulated the State Government for commissioning the Myntdu Leishka Hydel Electric Project in Jaintia Hills. The project was commissioned in March this year by the Chief Minister.
The Planning Commission also said that the State’s effort in developing the horticulture and floriculture sectors is commendable. Meghalaya is a major producer of strawberry in the country now due to the State Government’s initiative to develop the horticulture and floriculture sectors.
Sangma on his part highlighted the special problems relating to development of infrastructure, such as State highways, major district roads, replacement of timber bridges, water supply at Garo Hills. He also said that the State was facing problem in tackling the issue of unemployment.