Gangtok, August 21, 2013
Pang Lhabsol, the festival of unity, was celebrated today with much grandeur at M.G Marg, Gangtok. Governor of Sikkim, Shrinivas Patil graced the occasion as the Chief Guest. The program had Chief Minister of Sikkim Pawan Chamling as the Guest of Honour.
On their arrival, the Governor and the Chief Minister paid their rich tributes to the statue of unity situated at the M.G Marg premises.
In his address, the Governor expressed his pleasure at being a part of this significant festival. He maintained that this festival has a special place in the social, political and cultural life of the people of Sikkim. He further added that the festival is a symbol of the progress that Sikkim has made in all spheres. This, he said, has been possible only through the spirit of unity in diversity and an innate desire to maintain peace and tranquility.
Further, Mr. Patil suggested the Government and stakeholders to take steps towards sharing the rich culture of the State with the entire nation, and also to import experts from the Country and even abroad to perform in our local festivals. This, according to him, would encourage the local talent, and also attract tourists and stakeholders to this pristine State. Later, the Governor congratulated the Pang Lhabsol Celebration Committee for the colorful presentation.
Earlier, Chief Minister Pawan Chamling, in his address, informed that the State has always had a tradition of worshipping nature in its purest form. He stated that the Government has taken positive steps towards the preservation of heritage sites and places of worship. He cited the examples of how the state government has taken the initiative to preserve the purity of Mountain Kanchendzonga, the guardian deity and Khechuperi Lake. Similarly he threw light on the initiatives of the Government to preserve the environment, like ban on plastics and non-degradable, ban on grazing and felling of trees, ban on killing of wild animals, ban on use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers.
Further, the Chief Minister stated that the Government has protected the rights of the lands of Bhutia and Lepcha Communities, the twelve seats in the Legislative Assemble are exclusively BL seats. He further informed the gathering about the initiative of the Government to send aspirants for coaching for the All India Services. He especially urged the students of BL Community to come forward and avail of this opportunity. He announced that a grant of Rs. 2 lakhs will be made to the students who get selected for the IAS and allied sectors.
In his address, Chamling also threw light on the Company Bill that is currently tabled in the Parliament. He expressed his apprehension about the Bill being passed in its current form, as it had provisions which provides for establishment of Private Companies by any Indian within the territory of India. This he lamented, would enable people from outside the State to establish their strong foot-hold in the State. He urged the concerned stakeholders to form their opinions and share the same with the Government.
The Chief Minister stressed on the need to ensure the security and identity of the people of Sikkim. He suggested that documents like the Trade License, driving license and other such documents should be granted exclusively to Sikkim Subject Certificate holders. He invited suggestions from the people in this regard.
The Chief Minister sanctioned in principle the proposal for a Dome Structure at the M.G. Marg premises, particularly for the celebration of the annual Pang Lhabsol Festival.
Later, the Pang Lhabsol Celebration Committee felicitated the Governor and the Chief Minister.
The program had the presence of Ministers, Mayor, Councilors, Heads of Departments, Government officials, local gentry, and teachers and students from various schools.
The later part of the program consisted of cultural presentation by students and cultural organisations.
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