October 13, 2008 : Prof. Prem Kumar Dhumal, Chief Minister said that Central Government is imposing more authority on the States on various issues, which is against the spirit of federal structure of the country. He was addressing the Meeting of National Integration Council at New Delhi today.
Chief Minister told that lately Central Government has developed a tendency to treat education as subject in the Central List and added that Union Government is centralizing authority in medical and engineering education. He told that the seats for the native students have been drastically reduced in various professional colleges by the Central Government recently which has adversely affected the prospects of scheduled castes/ tribes and minority students who are unable to compete at national level. He suggested that moral education/yoga should be introduced as compulsory subject at school and college levels throughout the country to inculcate moral values, which would strengthen unity and integrity of the country.
Prof. Dhumal said that Himachal Pradesh Freedom of Religion Act 2006 has been enacted in the State to prevent forcible conversions and added that community policing at beat, police station, sub division and district levels has been started to build rapport for conducive environment so as to prevent forcible conversions in the State.
Chief Minister told that Union Government is extending step motherly treatment to Himachal Pradesh and added that only 33-kilometer railway line has been constructed in the State so far after independence. He said that previous NDA regime has sanctioned ten years industrial package till the year 2013 to the State but its period was curtailed upto year 2007 by present UPA regime which was later on extended upto the year 2010. He demanded that industrial package should be extended up to the year 2013 to its original time limit. He also demanded restoration of original quota of rice to the State.
Prof. Dhumal told that State Government has proposed Pathankot -Leh railway line keeping in view the strategic importance of the area bordering Tibet and added that it will provide easy movement to defence forces at international borders and will further generate tourism and economic activities in the region which will raise the socio-economic conditions of the people of snow bound backward areas. He pleaded for early completion of the Nangal-Talwara railway line and also requested for undertaking Chandigarh -Baddi and Bhanupali -Barmana railways lines on priority basis.
Chief Minister requested the Centre to provide liberal financial assistance for providing modern technology and equipment to police force to meet the growing challenges and ensuring peace and safety in border areas of the State. He thanked Central Government for sanctioning two I R Battalions to the State and also requested for liberal financial assistance to create modern infrastructure for strengthening these battalions so as to deploy them effectively in border areas of the State.
Prof. Dhumal said that State Level Vigilance and Monitoring Committee has been constituted under the chairmanship of Chief Minister to implement various central legislations like Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955, SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocity Act, 1989) etc in the State and added that a protection cell has been set up under the control of the Director General of Police for the same purpose. He asked the Central Government to enact the POTA type laws to deal effectively with terrorist and disruptive activities. He said that State Government has issued necessary instructions to all law enforcing agencies to deal with FIRs relating to communal problems effectively and added that such FIRs are treated as special reported cases in which necessary action is initiated immediately.