The government introduced the Meghalaya Right to Public Services Bill 2020 and St Xavier’s University Bill 2020 on the first day of the Assembly’s autumn session here today.
The public service bill details liabilities for officials who have failed to deliver services (or rejected their request) within a stipulated period.
The proposed legislation provides citizens with the opportunity to file an appeal with the appellate authority within 30 days from the date of rejection or expiry of the time limit.
Officials can be penalized Rs 5,000 for a first offence under the bill or up to Rs 20,000 for repeated instances.
No civil court will have jurisdiction to settle, decide or deal with any matter under this proposed law.
Meanwhile, the St Xavier’s University Bill was also introduced, aiming to set up a new private university in the state to be run by the Jesuit order of the Roman Catholic Church.
The proposed university will be unitary in nature that is it will not have the power to provide affiliation to any colleges. However, it will be able to set up constituent colleges within Meghalaya and will have the right to open branches, units, centres or campuses anywhere in the state so long as it has prior approval from the University Grants Commission and Meghalaya government and follows provision of the Meghalaya Private Universities Act 2019.
Other bills tabled on Thursday were the Meghalaya Settlement of Arrears (Under the State Taxation Acts) Bill, 2020, Meghalaya Minerals Cess (Amendment) Bill, 2020 and the Meghalaya Farmers (Empowerment) Commission (Amendment) Bill, 2020.