IMPHAL, Oct 24 : Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh formally inaugurating the Serou Bridge built over the Chakpi river has declared that there is no guarantee that sitting Congress legis-lators will be allotted party tickets for the upcoming Assembly elections.
Gracing the bridge inauguration function at Serou as the chief guest, the Chief Minister categorically ruled out allotting Congress tickets to sitting MLAs as well as individuals aspiring to contest the election as Congress candidates, if they are unlikely to win.
Ibobi asserted that aim and objective of the Congress organisation is to establish a stable Government in order to ensure that development activities reach every nook and corner of the State.
declaring that ensuring success of the Congress party in all the 10 Assembly Constituencies in Thoubal district is being accorded top priority for a stable Government, he reiterated that Congress tickets would be allotted after minute assessment of strength and command of the candidate concerned.
Affirming that allotting Congress ticket to the present Works Minister K Ranjit for contesting the 10th Manipur Legislative Assembly from Sugnu constituency is unlikely to pose any problem to the Congress organisation, O Ibobi also clarified that construction of Serou Bridge had been under the consideration of the SPF Government even before K Ranjit became the Works Minister.
Construction of the said bridge was inevitable as it would benefit various villages situated at remote corners of three districts, he maintained.
Reminding that only through concerted efforts of all the legislators will there be success and stability of a Government and calling upon all the ministers and MLAs to concentrate on development activities, he urged for continuous support to the Government to tackle/solve all outstanding problems.
the Chief Minister further stated that the SPF Government is making all out effort for equal development in both the hills and valley areas.
Through decentralisation of power in conformity with the spirit and principles of a democratic set-up the State Government is striving to attain the goal of equal growth and progress, maintained Ibobi and cited recent conduct of district council elections to substantiate claims that the Congress-led Government is determined to accelerate development in the hill areas.
Conveying that the SPF Government has been able to convince the Centre to extend various development programmes to Manipur, the CM expressed satisfaction that the State is finally heading on the path of all-round progress with the support of the people.
Works Minister K Ranjit, who presided at the occasion, expressed satisfaction that the Government has proved its commitment and determination to serve the people.
He described completion of the bridge as a long cherished dream becoming a reality and conveyed confidence that the bridge will not only ensure convenience in transportation of goods and people but will improve socio-economic condition of the people of adjoining districts.
Outer MP Thangso Baite, Assembly speaker I Hemochandra, Health Minister L Jayentakumar Singh, Rural Development Minister Md Alauddin Khan, Deputy Chairman of State Planning Board Bijoy Koijam, and MLAs Thangkholun Haokip, M Prithviraj and E Dwijamani were also present at the inauguration of the Serou Bridge.
At 253.35 metres in length and 12 metres wide, including the foot-path, the Serou Bridge becomes the longest structure constructed over a river in the State and will establish surface connectivity between remote villages located under chandel, Thoubal and Churachandpur districts.
Estimated to have been constructed at a total cost of Rs 19 crores from the funding of the Central Government’s Special Plan Assistance, the construction work started in February 2008 and was completed in September this year.
It is expected that the bridge will not only ensure convenient mode of transportation and boost econo- my of the interior villages but will facilitate the Government to initiate health care programmes to remote villages near the Indo-Myanmar international boundary.
Prior to construction of the bridge crossing the Chakpi river during monsoon seasons was prone with risk due to its turbulence and unpredictable nature.
The only mode of transportation, for major part of a year, from either side of the river was on a single canoe with walking across the river being the norm during dry season.
Source: The Sangai Express