Information activist who doled out lakhs

as RTI fee felicitated

Do not use RTI Act as a tool to blackmail: Cheda

Staff Reporter

ITANAGAR, Jan 16: Arunachal RTI Activist Forum (ARTIAF) felicitated Nabam Pali for his effort to reduce the RTI application fee from Rs 10 to 2 in the state, in Itanagar today.

Arunachal Press Club (APC) President Chopa Cheda while felicitating Nabam Pali in a simple yet impressive function congratulated him for achieving the feat.

At the event, Pali showed records of paying Rs 3.40 lakhs and Rs 1. 21 lakhs in two instances as treasury challan to get information.

“When I initially started using RTI Act in 2007-08, the officers charged me Rs 50 for an application which was not right and I had to spend a huge amount of money as treasury challan to get the information. I somehow managed to arrange the money then but what about the poor ones who cannot afford it,” he said.

“Officers of various departments charge huge fees to give out information which is not just and they do so because they want to hide information so accordingly the poorer section cannot seek information under RTI Act. That was the reason I filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in a single bench High Court at Naharlagun asking them to reduce the application fees from Rs 10 to Rs 2 as the charge in many states are very less and even free in some,” lamented Pali. He further informed that the application at the High Court was filed on February 18, 2014 and finally got approved after a long struggle.

Cheda cautioned the activists not to get carried away and set bad examples for the future generation by misusing RTI Act.

“There is a huge gap between the activists who seek information under RTI Act at national levels and us, as many people misuse RTI Act to earn easy money and blackmail people. Don’t use RTI Act for vested interest,” said Cheda.

Cheda who is also a life time member of National Campaign for People’s Right to Information (NCPRI) which includes the likes of Aruna Roy, Mukul Dey etc further informed that BPL category people could file RTI free of cost.

Cheda who was the founder president of ARTIAF, in his address said that during his tenure he too had initiated the process to reduce the fee.

“We have submitted a memorandum in this regard to the govt in 2010 and again during Nabam Tuki’s tenure asking them to reduce the charges of fees for RTI applications but our pleas went unheard. This is a big achievement and a gift given by Pali to the RTI activists of the state,” said Cheda.

“ There are thousands of unions and organizations in the state but only a handful are popular because of their works. We struggled a lot as RTI activists but we used RTI Act for genuine cases for which the forum had became so popular,” said Cheda adding that the small steps taken by the forum paid dividend for all the RTI activists of the state while the steps taken by Pali would serve as a weapon in the future.

Earlier in the programme, ARTIAF Chairman Advocate Kasung Cheda while describing the objectives of RTI claimed that it is a big weapon for a normal citizen against corruption.

“RTI Act  promotes transparency and accountability but a few are misusing it and blackmailing officers for money which has to be avoided. RTI activists have a bad image in the society as people tag  them as Right to Income,” said Kasung stressing that the forum was trying to overcome those hurdles.

“No corruption or blackmailing will take place if the officers are clean. If they are clean then they can simply furnish the documents sought. Even the RTI activists should use RTI Act in a proper way and seek the right information to avoid any discrepancies, as one should not forget that even the activists can be penalized for blackmailing,” he added.



Govt committed to development: Tuki

YACHULI, Jan 16: Despite all kind of hurdles, the state government is committed to developing the state’s priority sectors, said Chief Minister Nabam Tuki at Yachuli today.  Addressing a mega vikas rally cum development meeting here, he reiterated that working for welfare of the people is the only motto of his government.

"In such a short span of time, we have emerged as one of the most progressive states in the country. Even the central government is acknowledging our progress. We need to collectively march ahead....despite our differences if any," he said.

Calling upon the people to be active partners in this journey of progress, Tuki assured full cooperation and support to the overall development of Yachuli.

Responding to a memorandum submitted by Toko Puna, Organizing Committee of the rally, Tuki regretted that despite the foundation stone laid for creation of the office of Divisional Commissioner and DIGP (Western Zone) at Yachuli by one of his predecessors in 1999, the project could not take off. He assured that the proposal would be re-processed and his government would leave no stones to fulfill it. Hailing the immense potential of the region, the Chief Minister admitted that it could be developed into a skill development centre, in line with his pet project of skill development and employment generation.

To another demand, Tuki requested the deputy commissioner to submit proposals for creation of a circle headquarter at Tajgi and CD Block at Yazali Zilla segment.

He further assured that a B Class police station would be considered at Yachuli and Pistana headquarters in consultation with the Home Minister.

To commemorate the occasion, the Chief Minister and his colleagues distributed LED colour TVs to gaon buras and buris under the Chief Minister's Rural Information scheme.

Also present on the occasion were Home Minister Tanga Byaling, Civil Supplies Minister Tirong Aboh, Parliamentary Secretaries Punji Mara, Karya Bagang and Pani Taram besides others including government officials and gaon buras. Pradesh Congress Commitee President Padi Richo with party colleagues and representatives of frontal wings were also present in the rally.

Earlier in the day, Tuki along with his colleagues inaugurated the newly built Circuit House, a 33/11 KV, 3.15 MVA switchyard sub-station, a Krishi Vigyan Kendra, the Yachuli Water Treatment Plant, office of the Additional Deputy Commissioner and a Mini Stadium. He also laid the foundation stones for SE PWD office and SE PHED office.



Komoli Mosang recognized for social work

ITANAGAR, Jan 16: Komoli Mosang, Chairperson, RK Mossang Memorial Society has received “National Mahila Rattan Gold Medal Award” from the International Institute of Education and Management on January 15  in a function held in Indian Society of International Law, New Delhi.

She also received the “Star Asia Award” on the same day from International Business Council, New Delhi.

Both the awards have been awarded for her outstanding works for the community through RK Mossang Memorial Society, Jairampur, Arunachal Pradesh.



3-day Arunachal Agri Expo-2016 commence

[ Prafulla Kaman ]

PASIGHAT, Jan 16: Arunachal Agri Expo-2016 and National Seminar on ‘Horticulture for Prosperity’ commenced today at College of Horticulture & Forestry (CHF) at Pasighat.

The three-day occasion organised by CHF under Central Agriculture University in association of ICAR, NABARD and NHB and DBT includes exhibition of food crops, fruits, vegetables, medicinal plants and other horticulture produces of the hilly state.

Inaugurating the programme, Vice Chancellor of Central Agriculture University, Dr Premjeet Sing said that Arunachal Pradesh having different agro climatic condition was suitable for cultivation of various food crops, spices and other horticulture activities. He lamented that in spite of having sufficient resources farmers of the region are yet to harness the rice potentiality in the field of agriculture and allied sectors. Sing said that objective of the Central Agriculture University is not confined to confer degree or diploma to the students/ learners, but it aims to extend technical education among the farmers through research and documentation. Running of institutes of Agriculture/ Horticulture is meaningless until these can achieve success in helping the rural farmers to boost their productivity, he added. Laying stress on ‘crop diversification’ and ‘protected cultivation’ to increase production, the VC suggested the farmers to adopt the modern technologies in cultivation.

“Our university has launched some ambitious project to train the rural farmers in a phase-wise manner. We are planning to set up community radio station in Arunachal in order to guide the farmers on technical know-how in their agriculture and allied actives”, the VC informed.

East Siang, Deputy Commissioner, Isha Khosla attending function, urged the farmers to avail the training benefits to improve their cultivation activities. She said the farmers of the region earlier faced problems for technical guidance in agriculture and allied activities, which has now been solved after setting up the CHF and Krishi Vigyan Kendra at Pasighat as well. She appreciated the organizers for conducting such programme to train the farmers on farming activities and assured all possible cooperation from the administration’s end. The slogan- Jai Jawan Jai Kishan is still relevant in our country, she opined.

Among others, former Director of CAU cum Horticulture Adviser of Arunachal, Prof KK Jindal, Director of Introduction (CAU), Prof SS Nagra, BHU Director of Agriculture Institution AN Maurya, NERIST (Nirjuli) Director PK Das, Dean of CHF Pasighat, Dr AK Pandey and Prof BN Hazarika also spoke in the function.

The inaugural programme was followed by a seminar with the theme “Horticulture for Nutritional Security and Economic Prosperity”, wherein the scientists and agriculture experts presented papers pertaining to improvement of cultivation procedure to boost production, plant protection, pre and post harvest management and production of climate resilient horticulture crops.




Seppa ready for Kameng River Festival

SEPPA, Jan 16:   East Kameng District Deputy Commissioner Sandeep Kumar Singh today convened a review meeting on the progress of preparation for Kameng River Festival slated for  Jan 21-23 at Seppa.  The review meeting was attended by Secretary Tourism Dr. Joram Beda along with members from East Kameng Social Welfare and Cultural Organisation (EKSWCO) and head of departments.

DC briefed about the status of the overall preparation and expressed satisfaction at maintenance and widening of Township roads and approach road to the festival venue.  He also acknowledged the involvement of officers particularly EE PWD Seppa Division and its staffs and festival committee.

The DC also suggested for informative signage on trees and artifacts, religious places, cultural and historical importance. Singh further asked the committee to undertake precautionary measures and be prepared with medical emergency services. On security front, he suggested for arrangement of walkie-talkie, installation of CCTVs at strategic locations, deployment of volunteers as people police and proper traffic management plan. Later the Secretary (Tourism) and the DC along with the HODs, Officers and festival team have visited the venue and took stock of the ground status.



Indian army celebrates 68th Army Day

AALO, Jan 16: The 68th Army Day was celebrated by Indian Army at DSA ground, Aalo on January 15 to comemorate Late Field Marshal KM Carriappa’s taking over as the first Commander-in-Chief of Indian Army from Sir Francis Bucher, the last British Commander in 1949.  

The celebration started with ‘Run for Fun’, which was flagged off by Station Commander, Along Military Station, followed by painting and inter-school patriotic song competition wherein students from various government and private schools of Aalo participated. Army felicitated Yapu Yajo, mother of Late Naik Tape Yajo, Kriti Chakra and 11 other ex-servicemen by presenting them token of remembrance for their selfless service to the nation.  Naik Tape of First Assam Regiment laid down his life while guarding the border of the nation in Poonch sector of Jammu and Kashmir on September 22, 2008. He was  awarded the Kirti Chakra posthumously.

Weapon display was one of the main attractions of the celebration.

The Army Pipe Band and Jazz Band also dsiplayed their performance.  DIPRO



Fire mishap at Dumporijo devastates six houses

DAPORIJO, Jan 16:  A fire broke out at Bazaar line, Dumporijo on January 15 devastating six houses completely, including two RCC type, one SPT and three kutcha houses. The incident occurred four days after another fire mishap had devastated six rooms of Rijo Middle School and several houses on January 11 at Daporijo.

Meanwhile, the district administration along with the SP visited the accident site and assessed the extent of properties lost and damages in fire accident at Dumporijo.

Rs 2500 each was provided to the families of the victims. Local MLA Paknga Bage has also announced Rs 5 lakhs for the fire victims, informed Dr. Tagi Dango, i/c ADC, Dumporijo.

Earlier, fire accidents had occurred  at Pakam Colony on January 2,  Ligu Village on January 4, Sigin Colony on December 8 and 25. One abandoned Maruti car was destroyed in fire at Airfield on January 5. With inputs from DIPRO



Current political circumstances a blessing in disguise: PPA

ITANAGAR, Jan 16: Peoples' Party of Arunachal (PPA) termed the state’s prevailing political circumstances a blessing in disguise as this has brought forth the loopholes of the ‘controversial and defective’ Arunachal Statehood Act of 1987  to the knowledge of the common public.

Recalling the political history of Arunachal Pradesh, PPA president Kahfa Bengia stated that the year in which the Arunachal Statehood Act was passed in 1987, Arunachal Pradesh was under Congress rule and Nabam Rebia was then the AAPSU president.

“Pranab Mukherjee was one of the closest aides of Rajiv Gandhi, the then Prime Minister of India. And, now we see the same party in the state going to the President of India over the contentious issue of the power of the Governor of Arunachal, who himself was instrumental in the passage of the Arunachal Statehood Act being a senior Congress Leader in the Centre at that time", Kahfa said.

Recalling Lt. Bakin Pertin, the founder President of PPA, who had vociferously opposed the passage of the Act in the Union Parliament, Party secretary general Kaling Jerang stated, "Today as the history unfolds, the members of the same party who had neglected and overlooked the spark in the form of defective contents in Article 371 H giving overriding powers to the Governor of Arunachal are fighting a losing battle.

“Nabam Rebia, who had finally aided in the passage of the Act by silently withdrawing his protest, himself has become the victim of the provisions of the Act,” Jerang said.

The discretionary powers of the Governor of Arunachal is a subject of argument in the Supreme Court today but the inherent flaws in the defective Statehood Act cannot be undone unless amended through an Act of Parliament, he added.



Swarvajanik Siang Aarti Mahotsava 2016 concludes

PASIGHAT, Jan 16: The 2nd Swarvajanik Siang Aarti Mahotsava 2016 concluded today at the banks of Siang, Komlighat, Pasighat.

Aarti and prayers were performed by different communities and tribes residing in Pasighat on Jan 14 which was followed by a cultural night on the second day of the festival on Jan 15.

An essay and drawing competition for secondary and higher secondary level students was also organised by the committee. Around 35 students from various schools of Pasighat participated in the events.

Activities like arrow shooting, rafting and angling was done to enthrall the spectators and public.

Attending the programme, Col. Sanjeev Thakur, Rayang Military Station said that this type of benevolent steps should be carried on by the people of Pasighat for peace and prosperity of township and for the state as a whole.

Swarvajanik Siang Aarti Mahotsava celebrated  involving all the communities of Pasighat town irrespective of caste, colour and creed, status and tribe with a mission to promote communal harmony, universal brotherhood, peaceful co-existence and to usher prosperity and well being of each and every individual of the township.



Makar Sankranti celebrated by Keralites in state Capital

NAHARALGUN, Jan 16: Makar Sankranti/Makara Vilakku was celebrated by the Keralites residing in the Capital Complex with special prayers and lighting of traditional brass pedestal wick lamps.

The rituals were held at Shiv Mandir at E-Sector Naharlagun as well as in Itanagar where hundreds of Ayyappa devotees flocked in to worship the Makaravilakku on Makarasankranti day on Friday last.

The place of worship where Swami Saranam was placed was beautifully decorated with flowers. The front podium with the figure of Lord Ganesha made up of marigold flower petals surrounded with coconut lamps was a great sight for visitors to see. The lamp that was lighted as part of the festival akin to Makar Sankranti is called Nilavilakku-meaning a tall lamp, which is an integral part of festivals and ceremonies.



Karate team leaves for National School Games

ITANAGAR, Jan 16: Arunachal Karate-Do Association has selected 15 karatekas and 3 officials for the 61st National School Games to be held at Rupnagar, Punjab from January 20 to 24.

Prakash Limbu, Karate Coach, Sports Authority of Arunachal is the Chef de Mission.

Gampi Taku, J/T, GHSS,  Hija, Ziro and Chukhu Saha, Constable, Tax & Excise, BFC Bordumsa, Changlang are the team coaches for girls and boys respectively.

The team will be leaving here for Pujab tonight.

The team (boys): Armaan Parang Londa(-40kg), GHSS, Ganga, Itanagar, Kyabo Liyang (-45kg), Govt. Middle School, G-Sector, Naharlagun, Chopa Tallo (-50kg), GHSS, Kankar Nallah, Naharlagun, Mojum Dodum (-55kg), Sangey Lhaden Sports Academy (SLSA), Chimpu, Itanagar, Doni Yangfo (-60kg),  GHSS, KankarNallah, Naharlagun, Dakme Sii (-65kg), GHSS, Itanagar, Amanso Pul (-70kg),  GHSS, Hawai, Tarba Tai (+70kg), Govt. Secondary School, Chimpu.

Girls:  Rosemlu Tamblung (-36kg), Govt. Middle School, G-Sector, Naharlagun, Milleno Mamai (-40kg), SLSA, Nuanna Kri (-44kg), Govt. Sec. School, Tezu, Yamak Lida (-48kg), GHSS, Daporijo, Karsang Yanga (-52kg), King Cup Public School, Itanagar, Likha Nama (-56kg), GHSS, Polo Colony,Naharlagun, Ngurang Mala (+60kg), Prism Public School, Naharlagun.



DC reviews various on-going schemes in Pakke Kessang

SEPPA, Jan 16: East Kameng Deputy Commissioner Sandeep Kumar Singh in a meeting with all the government officials posted at Pakke Kessang reviewed the implementation of various ongoing schemes in the Pakke Kessang circle.

The Deputy Commissioner has constituted a committee with V Bellai, EAC, Pakke Kessang as its Chairman and GBs from the respective villages and RK Singh, Site Engineer of Sushee Infra as its members to resolve various local issues to ensure smooth progress of the TAH works. Dispute redressal and issues under CSR activities will also be taken care of by the committee. He expressed satisfaction over the progress of the TAH where BT carpeting has been done by the company from Khodaso to Alangtapte including Pakke Kessang.

Appreciating the efforts put in by the EAC, Pakke Kessang and local leaders of Pakke Kessang who helped in early construction of the TAH, Singh appealed to the villagers to provide the same support to the company officials so that the work can be completed at the earliest. However, there is a delay on the part of Power department in the shifting of the LT and HT lines. In this regard, he has directed the JE (Power) to complete the shifting work by January 31.

In response to the security issue, the DC has assured the company to make security arrangement very shortly. He expressed satisfaction on the performance of Education department.

On water crisis in schools, he has directed the JE (PHED) to sort out the problem as soon as possible. He has directed the EAC, Pakke Kessang and the MO in-charge to conduct meeting to review the progress of NHM activities regularly on 25th day of every month.

Sushee Infra has assured to make the Pakke Kessang Hydel functional and undertake the channel works under its CSR activities.

CDPO, Pakke Kessang has informed the DC that 10 anganwad centres have been selected as model angawadis and second tranche of SMP items are being distributed to all the centres.

In the meeting all the line departments, including Education, Health, ICDS, Power, PWD, PHED and CD Blocks have explained in details about the programmes and activities taken up by them.

The Project Manager, Sushee Infra was also present in the meeting. He has highlighted about the progress made so far by the company. He informed the DC about the problems being faced by the company in the construction of Trans Arunachal Highway in few pockets, which are Suchung and Palove. DIPRO



Vaccination against FMD in Kera-aa Ati

ROING, Jan 16: Over 35 pigs were vaccinated against foot and mouth disease by the officials of the veterinary department in a house to house vaccination programme organised by the Department of Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Lower Dibang Valley district, under the Saansad Aadarsh Gram Yojana at Kera-aa Ati today.

The department also organised an awareness campaign on animal husbandry and control of animal diseases for the villagers of the Aadarsh village yesterday at the Multipurpose Hall, where Dr Beleka Mimi, Dr Asif Ahmed and Dr K. Phukon, explained in details about scientific management of dairy, piggery and poultry, including housing techniques, feeding, prevention and care of various diseases, and adoption of animal husbandry as a source of income.

The department urged the villagers to approach in case of any information required for better breeding techniques and to bridge the gap between the villagers and the department. They encouraged the womenfolk for small backyard units of animal husbandry for extra imcome and to improve their livelihood, and assured any kind of possible assistance from the department.

The veterinary officials educated the villagers about how to dispose domestic animals that has died because of diseases and unknown cause. Dead animals that have died because of illness should never be disposed off carelessly, they should be burried deep in the ground. Ohterwise it will futher spread the disease", informed Dr Ahmed.

As informed by the department, vaccination against swine fever could be carried out because of unavailability of the vaccine, said the GS of Kera-aa Ati  Welfare Committee Hapi Mene.

In recent times, many pigs have died due to swine fever in the village, he said, requested the Veterinary Department to make the swine fever vaccination available as pigs rearing has been one of the main sources of income for many villagers.

The department also vaccinated around 70 cows at Jiprali village near Kera-aa Ati today.



District level CM’s Trophy held

[ Karyir Riba ]

ROING, Jan 16: The men and women teams of Roing Block will represent Lower Dibang Valley district in the State level CM's Trophy on Football while Hunli-Desali Block (men) and Roing Block (women) will represent the district in Volleyball,

A total of 16 teams had participated in football and 17 teams in volleyball, from the two constituencies of the district, the Roing and Dambuk Assembly Constituencies.

Roing Block women football team defeated Parbuk team by a huge margin of 7-0 goals while their male counterpart defeated Paglam Block 3-1.

In volleyball, Hunli-Desali block defeated Kangkong, and Roing Block defeated Parbuk in men's and women's category respectively.

Meta Dele and Ajiya Umpe were declared as best football players and Tao Dele and Wusimi Mito as best volleyball players.

The tournament was organized by the District Sports Department in coordination with the District Administration at the General ground.



Pemba Tamang felicitated

ITANAGAR, Jan 16: International shooter and army man Pemba Tamang of Rupa was felicitated by All West Kameng Nepali Sanskriti Suraksha Samiti (an NGO) for his outstanding performance in shooting in function at Sinchung, West Kameng on  January 15.

Pemba won numbers of medals in national and international level in pistol shooting which include a gold medal in the Commonwealth Games in 2006 in 25 metre rapid fire pistol, and a silver medal in Asian Games 2014, held in Incheon, South Korea.

Prior to the programme the NGO conducted a Foot-march-procession from Sinchung to Tenga Market in his appreciation and due recognization.

DK Dinglow, Director Youth Affairs, Arunachal Pradesh, Sange Tashi Thongdok, ZPM, Rupa Anchal Block, members of Zgang Depga, an NGO of Jigaon, and many dignitaries were present.



3rd Edition of CM’s Trophy

SANGRAM, Jan16: Team Nyobia has emerged victorious in both men’s and women’s category football match being played during the finals of the 19th Nyapin Assembly Constituency Level 3rd Edition of Chief Minister’s Trophy of Football and Volleyball at the General Ground here today.

Team Nyobia defeated Sangram by 4-0 goals in men’s category football while, in women’s category team Nyobia defeated Sangram by 6-0.

The final volleyball match in men’s category was won by team Sangram who defeated Nyobia by a score of 25-10, 25-15and 25-20.

Sangram SDO M Tato was also present on the occasion. (DIPRO)


January  17


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