Itanagar: Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Friday opined that Arunachal Pradesh was accorded Statehood in 1987 “before it had actually matured enough”. He felt that the state could have continued as a Union Territory for few more years.
Speaking at a symposium on ‘Youth Perspective on Development and Changes in Arunachal Pradesh in 50 years’ held here as a part of ’50 Years of Arunachal Pradesh’ celebrations, Khandu raised the quality of education to prove his point. He said during the UT times, schools in the state were very few but the quality of education was very high.
“The generation that received education during the NEFA and UT times were really educated. The quality of education reflected in their services. However, after becoming a full-fledged state the scenario changed,” Khandu claimed, while pointing out that hundreds of schools were then established across the state but the educational quality dropped sharply.
He, however, asserted that “nothing would be achieved by pondering on what went wrong or putting the blame on any individual or political party” and called for making the ‘wrong’ ‘right’ through administrative and political reforms, a statement from the CMO said.
“Since assuming the chief minister’s office, it has been my endeavour to bring in reforms with strong political will. Therefore, I had to take decisions, which at times, were frowned upon. One such decision was to establish the Arunachal Pradesh Staff Selection Board,” he said.
This decision, Khandu said, broke the ‘tradition’ of ‘job for vote’ and ‘job for cash’ prevalent across the state, therefore frowned upon.
“A Cabinet order would have done the job. But I insisted on making it an Act so that it cannot be tinkered by any chief minister or political party in the future easily. For any amendment or dissolution, it will have to be brought to the floor of the Assembly, which will not be an easy sailing as people outside the Assembly won’t allow it,” he explained.
“Today youths with merit and not those with connections are getting government jobs. In 5 to 10 years from now government offices will be different altogether- more honest, more efficient and more responsible, you will see,” Khandu said.
He called upon the youths to be responsible to their job at hand, whatever it may be and insisted on changing the mindset of only depending upon the government for all needs and only blaming the government for all problems.
“Questioning the government is good for, it is the sign of a healthy democracy. At the same time, we need to question the role of all stakeholders and most importantly, we need to question ourselves. Question what we could have contributed in solving the problem,” he pointed.