Meghalaya to focus on maximum economic growth

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Shillong, Oct 5 (UNI) With the state's growth rate plummeting to 6.33 per cent, the Meghalaya State Planning Board (MSPB) has decided to focus on the goal of maximum economic growth harmonious with ground realities.

The revamped MSPB has also constituted an eight-member working group to prepare a holistic road map for development of the state.

''The group will review performance and priorities of various government departments and conduct site visits to evaluate ongoing projects,'' MSPB Chairman P A Sangma told UNI here.

For this purpose, he said, a realistic assessment of sectoral potential, present status thereof, pragmatic long-term, medium-term and short-term targets and a well considered strategy for achieving these targets and other standard vital development indicators, within a given time frame, needs to be adopted and documented.

''These targets would be periodically monitored and evaluated,'' the former Lok Sabha Speaker informed.

Mr Sangma said the Board decided to draw up a focused three-year State Working Plan to achieve the new priorities of the Meghalaya Progressive Alliance (MPA) government as reflected in its recently notified Common Minimum Program (CMP).

The proposed Working Plan would include recommendations for suitable legislation to facilitate policies required to achieve the CMP goals, he said.

''A transparency committee has also been set up to facilitate all programmes of the government being executed in an open, informative, qualitative, accountable, time-bound and transparent manner,'' Mr Sangma said.

Earlier, Chief Minister Dr Donkupar Roy expressed concern with regard to the existence of a large number of unemployed educated youths in the state.

The developmental challenges facing the state are enormous, he said, adding that the state government would take corrective steps to plug these loopholes during the eleventh plan.

In fact, Meghalaya's growth rate has plummeted to 6.33 per cent during the tenth plan from 7.8 per cent in the ninth plan, Dr Roy informed.

''This was mainly due to resource and infrastructure constraints.

There is the need for accelerated investment in infrastructure,'' Dr Roy stressed.

UNI RRK DPM/src1540

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