Himachal celebrates 42nd statehood day

Shimla, Jan 25 (IANS) Himachal Pradesh Wednesday celebrated its 42nd statehood day with Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal highlighting the achievements of the state during this period.

It was on this day in 1971 that the state was conferred the status of full state – the 18th in the country.
“The per capita income that was Rs.651 in 1971 has gone up to Rs.18,493 in 2011 and the state’s gross domestic product rose from Rs.223 crore to Rs.52,426 crore,” Dhumal said addressing a state-level function in Sundernagar town in Mandi district.
He said the literacy percentage of the state is 83.8 percent today whereas it was only 23 percent at the time of its inception.
For the welfare of unemployed youth, the chief minister announced that 2,000 water guards would be employed for maintenance of water supply schemes in rural areas.
He also announced the enhancement of honorarium of water guards from Rs.750 to Rs.1,350 per month.
Dhumal also announced cash incentives and tax exemption under Mukhyamantri Gram Path Parivahan Yojna to encourage people to ply private buses in the interior areas of the state.
Earlier, the chief minister unfurled the national flag at the function and took the salute from the marching contingents.