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Pushing for relaxing norms for Arunachal road projects: Kiren Rijiju

Pushing for relaxing norms for Arunachal road projects: Kiren Rijiju

New Delhi: Admitting that road connectivity in border areas is of utmost importance, Union Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju on Saturday said he has been pushing for relaxation of norms specifically for Arunachal Pradesh in implementing Prime Minister Gram Sadak Yojana.

“The Union Home Ministry will pursue with the ministry concerned for connecting each registered village under PMGSY by relaxing its norms for the state,” he said.

Rijiju was addressing a meeting with Chief Minister Pema Khandu and high level officers of the state government on ‘Special Package for Border Areas’ in Itanagar. He said the ministry is also mooting proposals for a frontier highway and an industrial corridor for Arunachal Pradesh, an official statement said. “We are proposing the frontier highway to connect all towns along the international border and the industrial corridor to connect all foothill areas.These roads along with the ongoing Trans-Arunachal highway in the middle belt will become the lifeline of the state around which other arterial roads will come up solving the connectivity hurdle forever,” Rijiju said.

He asked the state government to submit proposals immediately so that the Home Ministry can pursue those with the ministries concerned for sanction. Khandu emphasised on road connectivity to usher in development and welfare projects in remote border areas of the state. The proposal for seeking a ‘special package’ for border area development was mooted in 2014 but was delayed due to various factors, the statement said.

Khandu asserted that further delay in going ahead with the proposals will deprive timely development of remote border areas of the state and urged officials of the departments concerned to submit their proposals immediately. “We have lost enough time. We can’t wait anymore,” the chief Minister said.

The state government is seeking special assistance from the Centre in health, education, rural connectivity, power (including solar and alternate resources), drinking water and civil supplies, the statement said.