Daily News Analysis

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Meghalaya High Court to take only urgent cases

In view of the outbreak of corona virus or COVID-19 across the globe, the Meghalaya High Court Bar Association requested the lawyers and litigants to abstain from attending the court from March 17 to 27.

It may be mentioned that the bar association has taken this decision following a meeting convened by Meghalaya High Court Chief Justice which was attended by the senior lawyers and additional advocate general in the presence of the judges of the High Court.

“I would request my lawyer colleagues to inform their clients not to attend the court for the time being. I would also request my colleagues to avoid any gathering or meeting at the Bar Association,” Meghalaya High Court senior lawyer, S.P. Mahanta said.

He said that only urgent matters would be taken up with prior intimation to the other parties adding that a notice also needed to be given to the registry to inform on cases of urgency which is required to be taken up.

Meanwhile, another senior of the High Court, VGK Kynta informed that the accused of the criminal cases does not need to appear before the court at the moment.

“The accused need to contact their lawyer to know about the future dates which they need to appear before the court,” Kynta said.

He also said that the court is also requested not to issue any order of arrest warrant during this period.

“We have taken this decision to avoid any large gathering in the court in view of the outbreak of COVID-19. This is a precautionary measure which is being taken as per the advised of the High Court,” Kynta added.

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Meghalaya Government order closure of all educational institution

Meghalaya Government during the budget session declared the closure of all educational institutions in the state from 17 to 31 March 2020 to prevent the spread of Corona Virus. This was taken by the State Education department through an advisory to close down all Educational institutions in order to prevent the possibility of an outbreak and spread of the COVID- 19 (Corona virus) and as a precautionary measure to safeguard the citizens of the State.

The Education Department declares the closure of all Educational Institutions in the State except the examination centers for MBOSE, ICSE, NEHU, CBSE and other institutions that are undergoing examination from the 17th March, 2020 till the 31st March, 2020.

The government urged that the advisory guidelines below are to be strictly followed by all Institutions to disseminate to the parents and their wards to contain the spread of the virus.

During this closure period, parents are advised to keep their wards away from visiting crowded places like cinema halls, public parks, tourism spots, swimming pools, gymnasium, shopping areas, hospitals or any centers that are densely populated.

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Meghalaya Legislative Assembly passed resolution to exempt the state from CAA

The state Assembly has passed a government resolution to urge the Centre to exempt the entire state including the areas not covered under the Sixth Schedule from the purview of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2019 (CAA), 2019. The resolution was moved by the chief minister Conrad K Sangma during the second day of the Assembly’s budget session here on Monday.

Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K Sangma said that there are 27 municipal wards out of which 23 are under the Sixth Schedule areas while the remaining four wards covering an area of 2 square kilometers (out of 23,000 falls outside the sixth schedule areas.

Conrad K Sangma also said that constitutionally the state government is not in a position to reject the CAA but can only urge the Centre to exempt the entire state and since the Act came into force, there has not been a single person who has applied for citizenship from the state government.

“It would give 100 percent exemption to us. I urge this house to pass this resolution and send strong message to Centre that we want the entire state to be exempted from the purview of the CAA,” he added.

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State government to introduce 2 bills in the concluding budget session

The Meghalaya Government to introduce 2 Bills in the Budget Session which will be concluded on 19 March 2020 i.e. Amendment to the Meghalaya Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act, 2006 and the Meghalaya Integrated Transport Project (MITP).

Speaking after the Cabinet meeting James K Sangma said that the cabinet has approved to introduces Meghalaya Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act, 2006 with an aim to increase in the Net Borrowing Ceiling (NBC) from the existing 3 percent of the GSDP to 4.1 percent.

“As the budget session of the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly is currently going on and In view of the fiscal stress in the state, it was proposed that the amendment of the MFRBM Act, 2006 should be regularized by a regular enactment” he added.

Regarding the Meghalaya Integrated Transport Project (MITP), James Sangma said that the Bills aims to avail loan with an objective to improve road connectivity, ropeways and inland and waterways for transportation while keeping in view the tourism opportunities in the state.

The Minister said that this project is expected to bring about access to market, ease traffic congestion and to promote socio-economic development.

“I would like to inform you that the department of economics affairs, govt of India, ministry of finance had approved the project for external assistance of 300 million US dollars to be sought in two phases of 150 million US dollars” he added.

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Government is committed protect the lives of all the citizens of Meghalaya: Governor

Meghalaya Governor Tathagata Roy during his inaugural speech in the ongoing budget session said that it is the duty of the state government to protect the life and liberty of the people in the state.

“The government has taken all necessary steps to provide adequate security to all citizens, irrespective of the community they belong to” he added.

Governor Tathagata Roy said the state has witnessed agitation and protests by various NGOs against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 (CAA) and the demand for implementation of Inner Line Permit (ILP) in the state and it is unfortunate that such incident took place on February 28, in Ichamati between two groups.

The Governor also express concerned over the recent incident of mob lynching in Syntung area, and that such incidents tend to mar the good reputation of the state as a peace loving tourism destination. He also appeal to all citizens of the state to refrain from all such acts of violence in the interest of maintaining peace and harmony in the state.

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