Gangtok, March 14:
General Budget 2022 which has been prepared with an objective of not leaving any citizens behind has many positive aspects for Sikkim. This was informed by Ms. Pavitra Bhandari, Chairperson of Sikkim Commission for Other Backward Class while addressing the workshop “Vartalap” as a chief guest organized for local journalists by Press Information Bureau, Gangtok under Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
Union Budget 2022 has besides various initiatives, emphasized on promotion of chemical free farm practice throughout the country, which is not only commendable but Sikkim has adopted it for a very long time. As such it has given a moment to be proud of, Ms. Bhandari added.
Further, she informed that the State Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Sikkim has remained positive over the time. Stating that the role of media in democracy being crucial, the State government which believes in inclusive politics is trying its best to keep the history of journalism as vibrant as it needs to be, she informed. Seeing the condition of print media in pitiable condition, the present State government would positively take steps to safeguard its interest if journalist associations and other stakeholders would come up with positive suggestions, she assured.
Earlier, while presenting keynote address on “General Budget 2022- Leaving No Citizen Behind and prospect of NE Region and Roadmap for Agriculture and prospects of Sikkim”, Prof. Abhijeet Dutt of Sikkim University, Department of Commerce highlighted the background, its source and the sectors where it would be spent. Stating that the budget 2022 being futuristic, it would be reflected positively in the long run’. The budget also reflects the slogan of “Sab ka Sath, Sab ka Vikas and Sab ka Viswas” as promulgated by Prime Minister of India, he added. Dutt also highlighted aspects of PM Gatishakti, MSMe, Education, agriculture, Start-up, digital banking etc.
Similarly DGM, NABARD Vijay Bhatt presented his address on the roadmap for agriculture and prospects of Sikkim. The general budget of 2022 has many beneficial projects for Sikkim and the northeast states, he added.
State IEC officer Sonam Bhutia in his address informed that it would be foolhardy to ignore COVID protocol even though its spread has decreased. “There still is uncertainty about COVID. As such, we must follow COVID appropriate behavior and remain protected,” he informed.
Addressing the workshop, President of Press Club of Sikkim Shekhar Khawas while presenting several examples, informed that the media has an important role to play in the context of rural development.
Similarly, President of Journalist Club of Sikkim Bhim Rawat in his address informed that being complementary to each other, the objective of both the government and private media is to inform the people. Even though both the government and private media are discharging their duties, private media has comparatively broader reaches, he informed. And since it gathers further importance when the code of conduct is invoked during election time, the government must mentor and give patronage to it, he added.
Journalist Ajay Thami highlighted the difficulties and challenges faced during rural reporting. Earlier welcoming all the participants in the workshop, Media & Communication Officer from PIB Shillong Gopajit Das highlighted various welfare schemes of the government and said that the objective of a workshop like “Vartalap” was to further disseminate it to the masses.
The workshop attended by active journalists of Sikkim was focused on the importance of the role of media in disseminating information of welfare schemes of the government to the people. It is the fifth edition of Vartalap organized by PIB Gangtok. The workshop was coordinated by senior journalist Suman Gajmer. (PIB)