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BJP promises to completely seal Indo-Bangla border in Assam

Guwahati: Releasing the Vision Document for poll-bound Assam, the BJP on Friday promised to completely seal the Indo-Bangla border in the state to stop illegal infiltration if it comes to power and also take action against entities employing infiltrators.

Unveiling the “Assam Vision Document 2016-2025–Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas”, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley also accused Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi of destroying and changing the demography of the state by allowing infiltration. Assembly polls in Assam will be held in two phases on April 4 and 11.

BJP President Amit Shah while addressing two rallies at Sibsagar and Sonari said a party government in the state would take steps to stop illegal infiltration from Bangladesh, alleging Assam has never been safe under Congress’ 15-year rule.

“Assam’s border has been opened as a road for lakhs of infiltrators from Bangladesh to snatch away employment from Assam’s youth,” Shah said, as he urged the electorate to help form an NDA government in Assam and and stop infiltration “100 per cent”.

“Congress has been doing it(allowing infiltration) for many decades and took no action,” Jaitley said, adding that if BJP comes to power, it will work closely with the Centre for “complete sealing of the Indo-Bangladesh border in Assam”.

The Vision Document said a law would be enacted to sternly deal with industries, businesses, SMEs or any other agencies employing infiltrators. It further said all encroachments will be removed from forest, religious bodies, wasteland and tribal belts.

“We are clear in our mind that 2016 election is a historical chance to defeat and uproot the failed 15-year-old Congress government. That is why all anti-Congress social and political parties have united and are fighting together,” Jaitley said.

He exuded confidence that BJP-led alliance will not only win, but it will be a “landslide victory” in Assam.

“The mood to change the ruler is consolidating day by day and a desire for a change is sweeping across the state. People of Assam are fed up with slogans and want growth on ground. The aspirational politics is visible among youth, who are our core strength,” Jaitley said.

The BJP document promised to construct model villages in collaboration with BSF, ex-servicemen and indigenous people along the border, besides securing the inter-state boundaries through amicable settlements with neighbouring states.

The state government will appoint a retired judge of the Gauhati High Court as Lokayukta and implement ‘zero tolerance’ policy against corruption.

“A corruption free government is our topmost priority. A full fledged office of Lokayukta shall be established within the very first year. In each department, there will be a Director Vigilance, who will deal with the corruption issues,” BJP said in the document.

Shah promised to take the state on the road to progress giving a corruption-free government.

“Corruption is highest in Assam. No money is being spent for development of roads, electricity supply, building good hospitals. If you search, the money sent for development will be found in minister’s houses,” Shah alleged.

On Congress’ allegation of fund cut to the state by the NDA government, Jaitley said, “Assam will get 148 per cent more in 2016-2020 compared to 2011-2015 due to higher tax devaluation of 42 per cent as against 32 per cent earlier.” He said Assam will get Rs 1,43,239 crore as tax devaluation as recommended by the 14th Finance Commission as against Rs 57,854 crore during 13th Finance Commission.

Jaitley also said the 90:10 funding pattern to Assam has been restored on the suggestion of the NITI Aayog.

“So stop misleading the people. A failed government is trying to find excuses for its failures,” he added.

The Vision Document said there will be a “zero tolerance policy” against those creating disturbance. It said the welfare of insurgents who surrender and join the mainstream would be ensured, families affected by terrorism would be looked after by the state government, and families of martyrs of Assam Movement would be rehabilitated.

For poverty elimination, BJP promised to give “pucca” house to poor families by 2021, introduce interest-free loans to self-help groups from poor sections of the society, besides providing “land patta” to every landless family of the state.

The government will create a land bank with surplus land, but ensure that no inhabitant is evicted in the process.

BJP said it will make Assam a power surplus state and provide 24×7 uninterrupted electricity to all and reduce energy loss due to inefficient distribution network.

The opposition party also promised to work for all round development of the Barak valley, including constructing at least five bridges over Barak river, setting up branch Secretariat in the region and improving connectivity.

On the controversial 2,000 MW Subansiri Lower Hydro Electric Project, the Vision Document said suggestions of the expert committees will be taken into consideration.

“Assam government will focus on smaller dams that have minimum adversarial consequences on the environment,” it said.

Regarding healthcare facilities, BJP said it will set up at least one multi-speciality hospital in every subdivision and one high-tech 500-bed hospital in every district.

Talking about the flood and erosion problem, the Vision Document said dredging of Brahmaputra bed will be done to address siltation and implement a special scheme for promoting erosion preventing plantation like bamboo and mangrove along the river banks under MGNREGA.

With the help of the Centre, the state government will give Rs 1,000 crore grant to Bodoland Territorial Council, it said. The BJP further promised to reserve 35 per cent seats for women in all government services of Assam.