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Assembly committee on women expresses concern on high infant mortality

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Shillong, Jan 21: The Assembly Committee on Empowerment of Women, headed by Dr. M. Ampareen Lyngdoh has visited South Garo Hills as well as West Khasi Hills district and reviewed various schemes there.

During the visit, the committee has found that infant mortality is very alarming.

Calling the visit a very revealing, Committee convenor, Dr. M Ampareen Lyngdoh said, “The infant mortality rate is very very alarming, even the teenage pregnancy rate is very high.”

Further, during the visit it was also found that a large number of contract farming is going on in the South Garo Hills region.

“Practically, a large Areca nut plantation is done on lease land, businessmen from other parts of India particularly from Assam would come to south Garo hills and they would informally or whatever lease on some sought of a contract farming practice,” Ampareen said.

Asked she said, “These are happening with arecanut and apparently happening with cashew nut and rubber, apparently this is being permitted there; general feeling is there some sought of an informal contract farming practices are going on there. “

The empowerment committee on Women also met about 6 Nokmas in Bagmara and discussed about contract farming, “There are so many schemes like National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM) and other schemes from Government of India, revolving funds, startup funds. We should not just lease out acres and acres of land,” the committee pointed out.

Since Tourism is a viable sector there, they also tried to impress upon officials to start focusing on domestic tourism.

The committee also observed that Simsang River has now slowly begun to regenerate itself, some amount of aquatic life seems to be coming back after the whole ban on mining activities.

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