23 Feb, Gangtok (IPR) : Chief Minister Shri Pawan Chamling laid the foundation Stone of Folk Healing Center here at Gaucharan, Assam Lingzey East Sikkim today.
On his arrival at the venue, the Chief Minister unveiled the plaque of the foundation stone and attended the traditional puja ceremony by religious priests and traditional healers.
Addressing a large gathering at the venue, Chief Minister Shri Chamling stated that the project will give maximum benefit to the people of this area. He said that it was a joyous occasion for the people of the village as well as a huge responsibility to ensure that the project is completed earnestly with the cooperation from concerned quarters.
At the outset, he stressed that the project originally envisaged as a folk healing centre should be upscaled to develop it into a Centre showcasing the complete folk history and tradition of Sikkim. He suggested that the name of the project should be Folk History Centre of Sikkim. The Centre would preserve and showcase the rich folk history and tradition of Sikkim with emphasis on folk music, folk literature, traditional food, and folk healing centre. The Centre would be a heritage showcasing the lifestyles, practices and identity of certain sections of the Sikkimese society which have otherwise not been highlighted. It will give the visitors a comprehensive idea of the evolution of folk history of Sikkim. He further added that the idea is to conserve our culture and institutionalize it and integrate it with contemporary development and the future of the people of Sikkim. It will be made a medium for socio-economic development while preserving the age-old traditions. This project aims to revive forgotten traditional healing practices. It will help regain the respect and reverence people had for these traditional practices in olden days.
Expressing happiness at the initiation of this significant project, the Chief Minister stated that it is a matter of great pride for the youth of Sikkim and added that everybody should contribute positively to ensure that the work for the project gets underway at the earliest.
Commenting on the Plan Layout for the project, the Chief Minister stated that the Project should ensure that traditional houses of all the communities of Sikkim should be built showcasing the rich tradition of each community. He directed the Departmental officers to revise the Plan to accommodate all the additions.
“On completion, the Folk History Centre of Sikkim will be a unique heritage and will attract visitors, researchers and scholars from across the world,” stated the Chief Minister.
He urged the people of Assam Lingzey and specially the local youth to take maximum benefit from the opportunities arising from the Centre. This Centre will have the capacity to generate sustainable livelihood opportunities for generations to come, he added. He shared that the intention of the Government is to make our youngsters educated and self-reliant by creating sustainable opportunities in Sikkim.
In his address, the Chief Minister instructed the office of the BDOs and the Panchayats to ensure that basic administrative work of the people should be solved transparently at their levels. These offices should ensure that the public is not harassed for simple work like marking order and Trade licences, he stressed.
The Chief Minister also gave positive assurances to all the demands submitted to him by the people during the programme.
Earlier, area MLA Shri Bek Bahadur Rai in his address urged the youth to realize the vision of the Government in creating sustainable projects and livelihood opportunities and called for the need to build their skill and capacity to meet the demands of the modern day. He profusely thanked the Chief Minister for envisioning the unique project and assured that he would personally monitor the progress of the work at every stage.
The technical report of the project was presented by PCE cum Secretary, Building and Housing Department Shri R.B. Thapa.
As per the technical report, the Government has acquired 6.85 acres of land for the project that would comprise of Traditional Houses, Yoga Centre, Tourist Interpretation Hall, Restaurant, Dispensary, Healing Centre, Dormitories, Ward Room, Tourist Guest House, Staff Quarter, and Herbal Garden.
The entire infrastructure would be built will be earthquake resistant and the environmental impact assessment of the project would be carried out.
The project will be built at an estimated cost of Rs. 110 Crore and is scheduled to be completed by August 2020.
The Project has been awarded to M/S CEEPL Kolkata.
Earlier, the welcome address was delivered by Chief Engineer, Building & Housing Department Shri R.K. Pariyar.
The programme had the presence of Deputy Speaker SLA Shri Sonam Gyatso Lepcha, Minister Agriculture Shri Somnath Poudyal, MLAs, Mayor GMC, Adhyaksha & Upadhyaksha East, Chief Secretary Shri A.K. Shrivastava, Chairmen and Advisors, senior officers of various departments, members of the panchayat, and people from Assam Lingzey and adjoining villages.