Northeast will be nurtured, says Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is being draped with traditional Naga costume by Nagaland Chief Minister T.R. Zeliang (R) as Governor of Nagaland, P,V, Acharya (L) looks on at the inaugural function of the Hornbill Festival in Kisama Heritage village, on the outskirts of Kohima, Nagaland, on Monday. Photo: Ritu Raj Konwar  

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said the entire Northeast region has a “Natural Economic Zone (NEZ)” and said that it would be his priority to nourish the NEZ and tap its potential for the benefit of the region.

Inaugurating the Hornbill Festival of Nagaland at Kisama Heritage village, 10 km off the State capital Kohima, the Prime Minister said that while other parts of the country have SEZ (Special Economic Zone) which are man-made, the NEZ in Northeast are natural but yet to be tapped.

'Capital of organic agriculture'

He also described the Northeast region as India’s “capital of organic agriculture” and said six new agriculture colleges would set up in the region.

Greeting the people of Nagaland on the occasion of the 51 st Statehood Day, Mr. Modi urged them to introspect and look back at what has been achieved over the last 50 years, and what ground remains to be covered.

Saying that Nagaland has been blessed with a rich bio-diversity and English-speaking young population, the Prime Minister —dressed as a traditional Naga Warrior-- said that it was an advantage for the State to attract tourists and to capture a part of the global IT outsourcing business.

Hornbill Festival

Describing the Hornbill festival as a “world famous festival”, the Prime Minister congratulated the people of Nagaland for organising it to preserve and promote the unique cultural diversity and rich oral tradition. He praised the Naga people for their rich cultural heritage and the sturdiness, honesty, simplicity, inherent strong character and hardworking attitude.

Highlighting the initiatives taken by his government for the Northeast region, Mr. Modi said that a modern apparel and garment manufacturing centre would be set up immediately in the State capitals of Assam, Nagaland and Sikkim. He also announced the Ishan Uday special scholarships for 10,000 students from the Northeast, and the Ishan Vikas scheme for facilitating exposure visits of 2000 students and 500 teachers of colleges in the region to other parts of the country every year.

‘Will come here often’

Mr. Modi said it was a decade since former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had visited Nagaland. “I want to assure you that you will not have to wait for so long again for a Prime Minister’s visit. I will be happy to come often to see that all that I have mentioned becomes a reality,” he added at the inaugural function of the 10-day long festival in the presence of Nagaland Chief Minister T.R. Zeliang and Governor P.B. Acharya.

He said his government has earmarked Rs. 53000 crore in the Union Budget for development of the Northeast. Besides, Rs. 28,000 crore has been earmarked for construction of new railway lines to boost connectivity and Rs. 5000 crore for improvement of intra-state power transmission systems and Rs. 5000 crore for 2G mobile connectivity in the region.

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Printable version | Dec 8, 2021 7:11:15 PM |

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