North EastState

Eight NE states & union territories discuss social justice themes in city

4th Chintan Shivir underway

Shillong, May 11: Union Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment Virendra Kumar on Thursday inaugurated a Chintan Shivir in the city to hold discussions for two days on how the people, together as a society, can ensure justice for all.

“Every individual has a room in their house that allows to feel peaceful and relaxed, no matter how tensed she/he is. People can think with clarity, come up with solutions that will help in moving ahead in life while in that room. This Chintan Shivir is a similar space, through which we will try to reach out to the very last person sitting in the last row of the society. Taking inspiration from Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas, we will discuss ways of further welfare and progress of the society,” said  Kumar while addressing the inauguration programme of the Chintan Shivir.


The minister equated the peaceful room of an individual’s house to the bliss that Meghalaya offers to every tourist on their arrival in the state. He said, “The land of Meghalaya with its natural bounty attracts many tourists. The bliss we feel at the moment we reach this state feels like we have come to the most beautiful room of our home.”

“The idea of the Chintan Shivir is to extend our efforts taken in other states to our Northeastern states and union territories. The aim is to inspire to work towards the overall betterment of the society,” informed Dr Kumar while citing the purpose of the two-day programme. He also stated that in order to be successful, there has to be will power to implement the various initiatives introduced by the central government. Nasha Mukt Bharat, Kaushal Vikas Yojana for youth, senior citizens’ welfare, and wellbeing of the scheduled castes and tribes of the society are some of the subjects that will be discussed during the programme.

Giving an insight into the efforts of the government, the minister informed that trademarks have been offered to the producers belonging to the scheduled section of the society, especially in the handloom sector. He cited the instance of Surajkund Mela, an annual event held in Uttar Pradesh, wherein they were provided with trademarks to help own their products. “We are trying to engage them in the Kaushal Vikas Yojana, provide them with easy loans to support their small business, and help them in moving ahead in the production sector,” he said.

He added that the Chintan Shivir will act as an ideal platform to discuss such ideas and aid in the overall development of a society. Speaking on the lines of the pre-matric and post-matric scholarships available for the students belonging to the scheduled castes and tribes, the Minister said that the government, through these Shivirs, will try to monitor the actions taken for smooth on time distribution of the same.

Stressing on the need to accelerate the Nasha Mukt Bharat Abhiyan, Dr Kumar said that intoxication is a huge challenge for the society. “Everyone has to join in this endeavor and pay attention to this challenge. Youths are the strength of our country. Social organisations should also work together to get rid of intoxication from the society. The central government aims to make every state of this country free from intoxication. In order to achieve this, along with the central government, the state government, gram panchayats, nagar palika, nagar nigam, non-governmental organisations, other social organisations, spiritual gurus, anganwadis, ASHA workers, everyone has to make an effort.

“There are 500 government rehabilitation centres, through which we facilitate treatment. We have also set up Addiction Treatment Facilities (ATF) at government hospitals to further help youths cope and get better so that in future, they can contribute to the nation building in their own capacities,” he further informed. Launched on August 15, 2020, Nasha Mukt Bharat aims to rid the youths of the society from substance use and the subject has been prioritized by the government across the country. Chintan Shivir will hold discussions on the same in these two days.

Pratima Bhoumik, Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment in her address said that the government is working on the idea of Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas and thus, all round, holistic and sustainable development across every sector under the Ministry is the top priority of the Centre. Expressing her positive thoughts for the Chintan Shivir, the minister said, “During these two days we will have in-depth discussions, with a platform to exchange ideas and discuss projects that had worked in different states and how to best emulate results. The discussion held during these days will help evolve an action plan to implement Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Vision 2047.”

Meghalaya Social Welfare Minister Paul Lyngdoh said the Chintan Shivir will provide a platform to celebrate our shared vision, values, and achievements. While enumerating the various welfare schemes of the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Lyngdoh said that the Ministry has introduced critical schemes to ensure every citizen may reach their potential.

The minister also highlighted various policies adopted by Government of Meghalaya for effective implementation of Nasha Mukt Bharat Abhiyan. He explained the recently passed Mission by the Meghalaya Cabinet namely the Drug Reduction Elimination & Action Mission (DREAM). This mission is planned with a vision to build a “Drug free Meghalaya” that leverages culture and communities through a multifaceted coordinated strategy to eliminate the incidence of substance use in the state, he added.

“ The mission is steered through a three-pronged framework to achieve its objectives: social mobilisation, setting up enabling support systems and drug regulation law procedure. The DREAM mission seeks to incorporate the lifecycle approach and build upon the existing Drug Abuse Prevention Policy, 2020”.

Various sessions have been planned during the two-day Chintan Shivir where representatives from eight Northeastern states  Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Tripura, Sikkim and Union Territorities of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Dadar & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu, Chandigarh, Lakhshadweep, Puducherry, Delhi, Ladakh and Jammu & Kashmir will engage in brainstorming sessions to come up with workable interventions for better functioning of the ministry.

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