Today, I addressed a large gathering of people from the three constituencies – Rhenock, Gnathang-Machong, and Chujachen at our ‘Vijay Sankalp Rally’ at Rorathang.
At the outset, I paid my heartfelt condolences on the passing away of Shri Naresh Chettri, former Zilla Panchayat, an ardent social worker and a dedicated SDF party worker, who passed away last night at a young age. I said that his death is a huge loss for the party and the people of Sikkim. I announced that the SDF party will provide all possible support to the family of the deceased . I also announced that the party will continue to support the dreams and aspirations of families of all such party workers who have left this world.
I shared with the gathering that when I was passing through the crowd of people gathered to welcome me, one Ambar Bahadur Chettri shouted repeatedly from the crowd that he wanted a house. I assured that our Government will build a house not only for Shri Ambar Bahadur Chettri but for such people of Sikkim who are yet to be allotted houses under the CMRHM scheme. I said that in the coming years we will complete all the houses and make Sikkim the first kutcha-house free State in the country.
I also announced that all ‘sukumbasis’ (landless Sikkimese ) will receive a plot of land each under the land bank scheme initiated by the SDF government.
I stated that people occupying unauthorised houses in small towns will be allotted a two-room flat each in upcoming housing colonies free of cost. Likewise, land occupied by people along State highways/forest lands will be regularised and registered in the name of the occupant. I gave the example of how land occupied by around 500 families of workers of Temi Tea Estate living in there since the time of the Chogyal were regularised and registered in their names few months back. I informed that the Government would also allot the lands under Lagyap power project area under Syari constituency and register them in the name of the occupants.
Likewise, we will distribute benefits like GCI sheets, house upgradation etc to all the people who have been left out. I reminded that our party is pro-people and our basic ideology is the upliftment of every section of the population.
I urged the people to compare how Sikkim was twenty-five years back and the Sikkim of today. I said that they should have faith in us and not get influenced by detractors. I added that people who say there is no development in Sikkim are either blind, insane or they are lying. It is known to all that as per the World Bank data, Sikkim is the fastest developing State in the world after the World War II.
I highlighted the following points to explain why Sikkim is today considered the fastest developing State in the entire world:
1. No State has become a fully literate State in 25 years in just 100 years of education history.
2. Sikkim is the fastest State to register a sharp decline in poverty level after the World War II. Today Sikkim’s percentage of poverty is less than 2%.
3. Sikkim achieved the unique distinction of becoming the first and the only fully organic State.
4. Sikkim is the first State to fulfill the basic minimum needs of its people.
5. Sikkim is the only beggar-free State in the country.
6. Sikkim is a gender discrimination- free State.
7. Sikkim is the most peaceful and secure State in the country.
8. Sikkim is home to India’s happiest people.
I further said that the SDF party is committed to sustain the development, peace, security, and prosperity by giving continuity to its pro-people programmes. I added that the SDF party has envisaged a set of nine-point programme called ‘Chamling Ko Nau Sankalpa’ that will give continuity to the growth story of Sikkim and will make Sikkim the most developed State in the world.
I addressed some of the specific issues and challenges of the three constituencies.
1. I assured that our Government will give highest priority to ensure qualitative drinking water to every household through efficient management.
2. I announced that all employment opportunities from the upcoming ‘Gaushala’ in Rhenock will be confined to the local youth of Rhenock and surrounding constituencies.
3. Only local youth from the three constituencies (90%) will get employment opportunities in the private sector industries established in the three constituencies such as liquor factory, pharmaceuticals units etc.
4. SDF Government will completely eradicate labour contractor system as per public demand.
Following are some of the policy initiatives that will be taken after the formation of the new Government:
1. Dalapchand PHSC will be upgraded to PHC.
2. Lingtam Secondary School will be upgraded to Senior Secondary level.
3. Chujachen will have East District’s biggest tourism project. The Government has already bought a 56-acre land for the purpose.
4. 70% of the demands submitted during the Chief Minister’s 32-day tour have been sanctioned. I assured that all remaining demands will be met within 100 days of forming the Government.
5. Demands for irrigation canals will be taken up on priority.
6. SDF Government will give priority to construction and upgradation of religious places of worship.
7. All the demands submitted by retired Government employees of the State will be met within 100 days of forming the new Government.
8. Government will continue to pursue the demand for exemption of Central Income Tax exemption to the Old Settlors. Also local licence rates for business community will be brought at par with businessmen from Bhutia, Lepcha and Nepali communities.
9. Token tax amount for vehicles will be reduced.
10. Pakyong Sub Division will be upgraded to a District along with Soreng in West Sikkim, and North District Development Council will be established. These decisions will be passed in the first Cabinet after formation of the Government
Explaining the principle and ideology of the SDF party, I told the gathering that our party has seasoned leaders unlike other political parties in the State who have seasonal leaders who surface only at the time of elections. Our party has experienced leadership, while other political parties are still in the experimental phase. I further said that the opposition parties in Sikkim lack a definite programme, while the SDF party has a full-proof programme to serve the Sikkimese people for a lifetime.
I also spoke about the commitment of the SDF party to take the long pending political demands of the State to a logical end.
In conclusion, I urged my party colleagues to continue the election campaign in a coordinated manner. I emphatically stated that the SDF party will sweep the coming elections by winning in all the 32 constituencies and the Lok Sabha seat.