Garo Hills Autonomous District Council (GHADC) celebrated its 66th anniversary at its headquarters in Tura of Meghalaya on Saturday.
The oldest post-Independence autonomous institution in the Garo dominated areas, the Garo Hills Autonomous District Council was set up over half a century ago to cater to development of the tribal areas.
Meghalaya Home Minister and in-charge of District Council Affairs James K Sangma graced the occasion by unfurling the national tricolour and paying rich floral tributes to the pioneers who had fought for the establishment of the Garo Hills Autonomous District Council .
Addressing the huge gathering at the council complex at Hawakhana in Tura, the State Home Minister highlighted the importance of the Garo Hills Autonomous District Council in safeguarding and preserving the customs, traditions and traditional rights of the hill tribes of the State.
Highlighting the acute financial crisis plaguing the district council, particularly the present situation where employees have not been paid their salaries for over a year, the Home Minister urged them to cooperate and extend their support for stability of the present Executive Council and informed that the Chief Minister of Meghalaya, Conrad K Sangma was also concerned about the affairs of the district council assuring to extend every possible assistance from the State Government.
The Home Minister also suggested that in order to pay due respect to the founding leaders of GHADC, statues or portraits of the late leaders can be arranged and paid floral tributes during the anniversary celebration from next year.
The Chief Executive Member, GHADC, Dipul R Marak, described in brief about the background, history and formation of the Garo Hills Autonomous District Council, Tura under the leadership of Late Captain Williamson A Sangma and Late Mody K Marak. He also mentioned about the challenges faced by District Council and its employees without salary for almost 14 months now and the recurring pending expenditure amounting to about more than Rs 59 crores.