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Arunachal Pradesh seeks compensation for not getting externally aided projects

 ITANAGAR, June 16 - With the State being ignored for foreign fundings, Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu has requested NITI Aayog to devise a mechanism to overcome this hurdle and compensate the State accordingly.

 Attending the 5th Governing Council meeting of NITI Aayog chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at New Delhi on Saturday, Khandu highlighted the need to devise a mechanism to make good the lack of externally aided projects (EAP) in the State through an appropriate alternate window of funding through NITI Aayog,” stated a statement from the Chief Minister’s Office here.

He further urged the Centre to consider relaxation in guidelines of national flagship programmes in respect of Arunachal Pradesh, while pointing out that the tough and inaccessible terrain of the State makes it difficult for agencies to implement the programmes as per guidelines.

While briefing NITI Aayog on the present status of ongoing road, rail and air connectivity projects in the State, the Chief Minister stressed on the need to augment and fast track communication like rail, road and air including information technology to bring in transformational change in the process of development in Arunachal Pradesh. He also made a special mention on plans for rainwater harvesting and water management.

While speaking on Aspirational district programme, he briefed NITI Aayog on the achievements and challenges faced by the State on the programme. Security matters were also discussed with support being sought from Government of India for police modernisation.

The Chief Minister threw light on the enormous strength and potential of the State in the field of agri and allied sector, tourism and hydropower, which he said if systematically harnessed would lead the State to new heights.

He also emphasised that agriculture needs a structural reform so that it transforms into a potential economic sector. He sought continued support from Central Government in the sector.

Noting that under PM Modi, the Government has reinvigorated the policy orientation towards the NE which has resulted in a palpable change in the support being extended from the Union Government to catalyse growth of Arunachal Pradesh, Khandu hoped for continued support from Centre particularly in the field of communication network.

Stressing for permanent bureaucracy in the State, the Chief Minister reiterated his call for creation of a separate cadre of All India Services for Arunachal Pradesh “for realising the aspirations of a New Arunachal in New India”.

Khandu said that the pace of development has been hampered with the State still under UT cadre. Owing to vastness and diversities, the officers posted need atleast two to three years to understand the needs of the State. By the time they know, they are transferred out, hampering the development process, he reasoned.

The Governing Council meeting was attended by Union Ministers, Chief Ministers, Lt Governors and NITI Aayog members. Later, the Chief Minister called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and discussed with him a wide range of issues pertaining to the State.

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