Meghalaya should set Education and Health care as mandates for LS candidates

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Top row: Jemino Mawthoh (left), Vincent H Pala (right); Bottom row: Dr. Mukul Sangma (left), Agatha Sangma (right)

The Election campaigns for the upcoming Lok Sabha election in Meghalaya is picking up the heat, as the state goes to vote in Phase 1 on April 11 next to elect two Parliamentarians to the 17th Session. But, somehow, the thrill and election-fever is confined to respective party offices and the party-workers. The general masses in this 47-year-old state still fail to connect with the Member of Parliament (MP), in respect of schemes and projects.

Under such circumstances, the block party workers and supporters need to sensitize the electorates in their respective jurisdictions, be it District Council constituency, Assembly constituency or the Parliamentary constituency. They should gather clear-cut mandate for the elected members, which should be included in the manifesto.

MPs from both Tura and Shillong Parliamentary seats have been inducted as the Union Minister of State for different Ministry in the past, including late PA Sangma as the Speaker of Lok Sabha, but for the masses, the contribution towards the state seems to be limited, as the electorates are more familiar with the MLA schemes, at times with the schemes from the District Council, as it is being implemented within their respective jurisdiction.

In fact, most of the Central schemes and projects if moved through the MP, it may have a better accessibility to the concerned department. This time, the state is encountered with various issues relating to both Education policy and the Health care system. Though both are state subjects, but are in extremely bad shape, which requires the intervention of the Central government. This is the occasion, where the stakeholders should draw a blue-print as the mandate for the LS candidates, such that they assured that their issues are taken up by respective MPs.

It may be mentioned that the erstwhile regional Hub of Education – Meghalaya, has witnessed how the Lower Primary and Primary education were being pushed by various authorities and are still being passed like football till date. The state education board is yet to improve the rural education, at the same time yet to come out with the syllabi to produce employable youths.

The higher education and post graduation are not in any better shape when compared with the school education, worst so are the professional courses where the industrial experts are not taken into consideration for imparting their expertise. The instructors are mostly appointed as per the reservation policy of the state, hence, in most cases even the fresh pass-out, having no industrial experience, are teaching the young minds. Hence, the state is producing unemployable youths.

In the case of Health-care, research has stated that about 75 percent of the earnings is spent on medication, at the same time, the patients and the attendants are not encouraged to seek second opinion which results to various wrong diagnostics. Yet the victims have no avenue to move for redressal, neither any relief from high cost of hospitalization and medicine.

The newly elected MPs from Meghalaya should take up the issues of Education and Health care, which in long run will only improve the standard of living and improve the Human Resources of the state. Otherwise, this election too will once again be conducted as mandatory, and without any agenda as mandate for the representatives in the 17th session of Lok Sabha.