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Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Shah talks case surge, border disputes with Northeast CMs

Rail and air connectivity for all N-E capitals by 2024, says Home Minister.

Written by Tora Agarwala | Guwahati |
Updated: July 25, 2021 3:38:18 am
Amit Shah with Meghalaya CM Conrad Sangma at the inauguration of the Inter-State Bus Terminus (ISBT) in Mawiong, Meghalaya. (Photo: Twitter | Amit Shah)

Home Minister Amit Shah Saturday held a closed-door meeting in Shillong with the Chief Ministers of all eight Northeastern states to discuss inter-state border disputes and the Covid-19 surge in the region, a statement said.

Several inter-state border disputes mark the Northeast, with tensions along the Assam-Mizoram border, in particular, flaring up in the last month.

The meeting also included the Director Generals of Police and Chief Secretaries of Assam, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Tripura, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram and Sikkim.

Apart from inter-state border disputes, issues such as drug trafficking, law and order, floods and tourism were also discussed.

Earlier in the day, Shah inaugurated a number of projects in Meghalaya including an inter-state bus terminus and a cryogenic oxygen plant. The capitals of all eight Northeastern states will be linked by rail and air before 2024, he said.

“Connectivity is crucial for development. That is why since 2014, Narendra Modi has been stressing on the importance of connectivity in the northeastern region,” said Shah, speaking at the inauguration of the ISBT at Mawiong near Shillong.

He added that the terminal would connect all eight states and accelerate economic activity.

Shah also inaugurated a cryogenic oxygen plant at and a paediatric ward at the Covid Stepdown Hospital, Umsawli and laid the foundation for a convention and exhibition centre at North Eastern Space Application Centre in Umiam.

He said the Narendra Modi government had prioritised three things for the Northeast. “First is to preserve and promote the region’s dialects, languages, dance, music, food, culture and create awareness about it all across India, second is to make it a peaceful region by resolving all disputes of the Northeast and third, is to make it into a developed region and bring its GDP contribution back to the pre-Independence level,” the Home Minister said.

Shah will visit Guwahati Sunday to lay the foundation stone of a medical college and hand out cheques to families of Covid-19 victims. This will be his first visit to the state after BJP’s victory in the Assam Assembly elections this year.

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