Governors can provide a new dimension to the development of their states by communicating with legislators and deliberating on subjects related to public well-being, President Ram Nath Kovind said here today. Addressing a two-day conference of governors and lt governors of states and union territories, the president said their obligation to commit themselves to the welfare of the people was more pronounced in the “current paradigm of cooperative federalism”. In his opening address at the conference, attended by Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Kovind said governors should inspire and connect all relevant stakeholders in their respective states for the creation of a ‘New India’ that is free of corruption, poverty, illiteracy, malnutrition and unhygienic conditions.
The assertion comes in the backdrop of Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal and Puducherry’s Kiran Bedi having differences of opinion in administrative matters with their chief ministers. “The president said that being an intrinsic part of the legislative system in their states, Governors can provide a new dimension to the development of their states by communicating with legislators, and inviting them to Raj Bhavan to deliberate on subjects related to public well- being,” a statement issued by Rashtrapati Bhavan quoted Kovind as saying. By participating in this meeting, governors and lt governors had got a good opportunity to discuss important issues and share experiences from their respective states, he said.
He added that they play the role of a bridge between the Union government and states. “The obligation of governors to preserve and uphold the Constitution and commit themselves to the service and welfare of the people is even more pronounced in the current paradigm of cooperative federalism,” Kovind said. The conference is being attended by 27 governors and three lt governors of states and union territories. The administrators of the union territories of Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu as well as of Lakshadweep are also participating as special invitees.
The president said critical milestones and national goals have been set in the context of the completion of 75 years of independence in 2022.
“In order to ensure ‘Team India’ advances in a single direction to achieve these national goals, governors should inspire and connect all relevant stakeholders in their respective states.” he said. The president said it was essential to link youth with the process of nation building. “The future of the country depends on the capacities, moral values and compassion of the younger generation. Special attention needs to be paid to higher education and skill development at the level of states,” Kovind said. He also stressed the need for trusting citizens more and gave the examples of self-attestation of documents by individuals and the easier mechanism for obtaining a passport.
Kovind urged the replication of these ideas at the level of states, since much of a citizen’s interaction with government agencies is at the level of states. By establishing communication channels with university chancellors and vice-chancellors, academicians, social workers and other thoughtful and enlightened citizens in the states, governors could help raise the quality of discussion and debate and provide an impetus to society and the state government, he said. Kovind also expressed the hope that the conference could help the Union government and states work together in the interests of all citizens, especially young people. The dream of a developed India will be realised, he said, only when every state develops.