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Scribes waste 6 hours as MDA fails to brief cabinet decisions   

Govt escapes queries on Star Cement, rice scam, Covid handling & mine tragedy      

Shillong, June 18: The NPP-led MDA government failed to brief the cabinet decisions on Friday to media persons though they were invited to provide coverage.

On June 17, the CMO, through a press release, had informed the media persons that the meeting of the cabinet will be held on June 18 in the cabinet room, Yojana Bhavan, Secretariat.

“Kindly make it convenient to cover the press briefing thereafter”, the invitation said.

The cabinet meeting started at 12.30 pm and went on for a few hours.

After the cabinet meeting, the Chief Minister Conrad Sangma said briefing will be done by Cabinet Minister James Sangma after the review meeting on Covid.

However, as the timing was not mentioned, the journalists had to wait for the briefing.

Later, the media persons, who gathered at Yojana Bhavan, were in for a surprise as Health Minister AL Hek updated only the outcome of review meeting on Covid and not the decisions of the cabinet meeting.

It was made known that a press release will be issued regarding the outcome of the cabinet meeting.

However, the cabinet decisions as mentioned in the CMO press release, did not have scope for further questioning.

The decisions included matters related to GST, forensic laboratory, registration number of vehicles, appointment of Officer-on-Special Duty (Technical) under power department, civil service rules and re-development of government land at Police Bazar.

Later, the media persons were compelled to approach Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong to seek clarity on the decisions taken by the cabinet.
Bu the attempt went in vain as Tynsong did not want to speak. “ You speak  to Chief  Minister”, he said. However, the chief minister was not available at his office chamber.

Sources said that the MDA does not want to face questions on limestone mining expansion by Star Cement, seizure of rice in Assam, Covid handling and mine tragedy among other important issues.

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