Governor highlights potentials, challenges at NEC plenary

SHILLONG (Meghalaya), Jul 9: Arunachal Pradesh Governor BD Mishra highlighted the potentials and challenges in Arunachal in his address on the first day of the two-day 67th plenary of the North Eastern Council (NEC) here on Monday.
Addressing the gathering of the governors and chief ministers of the eight Northeastern states, Mishra spoke on the connectivity bottlenecks in Arunachal, and the implementation of the 1500 km Trans-Arunachal Highway project, the Frontier Highway, and the East-West Corridor.
Saying that Arunachal Pradesh is the lone state which does not have an airport in the state capital (Itanagar), the governor urged the civil aviation ministry and the DoNER ministry to fund the project at the earliest.
He requested the NEC and the DoNER ministry to assist and participate in developing tourism, skill, healthcare and education sectors in the state.
Stating that Arunachal is the most strategically located state in the country, having a 1680 km long international borders with Bhutan (160 km), China (1080 km) and Myanmar (440 km), Mishra said border area development in the state “is a national necessity for security and to check thinning out of the population.
“The nation has to invest in the border areas so that people of the state are safe,” he said.
He informed that the Arunachal Pradesh government has submitted a proposal under the BADP and it would need additional package under the programme.
To boost the education sector in the state, the governor urged the NEC to explore the possibility of establishing important educational institutions in the state on the lines of IITs and IIMs. He also urged the NEC to open a strategic policy research cell in Rajiv Gandhi University, Doimukh, “which can deal with border-related issues across the Northeastern region, on the same line of the APJ Abdul Kalam Centre for Policy Research and Analysis set up by the NEC in IIM, Shillong.”
The governor informed that Arunachal Pradesh does not have any iconic institution. He requested for allotment of appropriate fund for one state-of-the-art Sainik School in the state.
Stating that the state has great potential in sports and music and there is a need for avenues to channelize the youth energies in order to wean them from taking to drugs and guns, the governor requested the NEC to provide fund for establishing five state-of-the-art football institutes and five state-of-the-art music institutes in the state.
He underscored that such institutes would help in weeding away the youth from the gun and drug culture.
The governor urged the NEC to take up major projects under the North Eastern Region Community Resources Management Project (NERCORMP). He said that there is need to accelerate the pace of socioeconomic development of Tirap, Changlang and Longding districts, for which the state government has submitted a plan of Rs 1524 crore to the home affairs ministry.
The governor also expressed his concern over the insurgency activities in the three districts and called for concrete action to bring peace and development in the eastern part of the state.
He also requested the home affairs ministry, the DoNER ministry and the NEC to strengthen the infrastructure at border check posts to promote inter-border trade with Myanmar, Bhutan and China. (PRO, Raj Bhavan)