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Thursday, Oct 28, 2004
Agri-Biz & Commodities
Government - Politics
Kerala, TN to hold talks on water-sharing next week
Thiruvananthapuram , Oct. 27
THE Chief Ministers of Kerala and Tamil Nadu will discuss the contentious issues relating to water-sharing agreements between the two states in Chennai on November 4.
The Chief Minister, Mr Oommen Chandy, told newspersons after a Cabinet meeting on Wednesday that the Industries Minister, Mr P.K. Kunhalikutty, and the Water Resources Minister, Mr Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, would accompany him for talks with the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, Ms Jayalalithaa.
It is expected that the various water-sharing agreements between the two States will figure in the discussions.
Mr Chandy said that the Cabinet reviewed the progress of the Government's 100-day action plan in respect of three departments - SC/ST Development, Labour and Rural Development. The results so far had been satisfactory, he said.
The Cabinet, in its subsequent meetings, will review the achievements of the other departments as well during the first 50 days of the action plan. The target date for the conclusion of the plan is December 17.
The Chief Minister said the Government would launch a one-year action plan from January 1 till December 31 next year. The plan was originally scheduled to be set in motion from November 1 this year, but had to be postponed in view of the ongoing 100-day action plan.
Mr Chandy said that in his interface with the public in five districts, it was found that some poor people were not in a position to pay market price for acquiring the title deeds to the lands they had been occupying for long years.
It may be recalled that the Government had decided to distribute 25,000 title deeds to the landless as part of the 100-day action plan.
In the circumstances, the Cabinet decided to give title deeds for lands up to five cents to the poorest of the poor at Rs 100 a cent. This, however, will be strictly for housing purposes.
Referring to the Rs 700-crore "hawala" racket in the State, Mr Chandy noted that the investigations into the case were being carried out by the Enforcement Directorate of the Centre.
The State Government's role was restricted to finding out whether the money had been used for illegal activities such as drugs peddling or arms purchase, he added.
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