‘North-East has emerged as New India’s greatest success story,’ PM Modi tells daily, cites his 70 visits to region

Bastar: Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses a public meeting ahead of Lok Sabha elections, in Bastar, Chhattisgarh, Monday, April 8, 2024.(IANS)

Bastar: Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses a public meeting ahead of Lok Sabha elections, in Bastar, Chhattisgarh, Monday, April 8, 2024.(IANS)

New Delhi, April 8 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said that North-East India has undergone an enormous transformation in the past ten years and today it is identified as an ‘abundant region rather than abandoned region’ because of the Centre’s thrust on bringing growth and prosperity to the region.

Speaking exclusively to the Assam Tribune at his official residence, PM Modi said, “In the last 10 years, it is visible how we have ended North-East’s isolation and developed it as Bharat’s gateway to the East.”

PM Modi said that his government has changed the perception of the North-East (N-E) and described it as the country’s ‘greatest success story’.

“Today, North-East has emerged as New India’s greatest success story. It has shown the world, jab Neeyat sahi hoti hai, toh Nateeje bhi sahi hote hain,” he told the daily.

Prime Minister further said that the N-E remained neglected to the margins for years but was now headed for robust growth, as local talent and youth are also part of this journey.

Speaking about the Congress regime’s ‘step-motherly treatment’ to the people of North-East, PM Modi said that this area remained on the margins because of lesser prospects of electoral gains but things changed under the NDA government.

Explaining his personal attention to the North-East, PM Modi said: “I have visited the region nearly 70 times, which is probably more than the total number by all former Prime Ministers before me” while adding that “policy of isolation and ignorance has been replaced with policy of integration.”

“Since 2015, Union Ministers have visited the North-East more than 680 times” he added.

Underscoring the milestones achieved under NDA rule, the Prime Minister informed that the past five years have seen investment quadrupling in the North-Eastern states and the infrastructural progress has connected it with the rest of the country ‘like never before’.

PM Modi also cited dozens of projects to elucidate how his government worked over the years to scale up progress in the region.

“We fulfilled connectivity projects like Bogibeel Bridge and Bhupen Hazarika Setu. I had the opportunity to inaugurate Sela Tunnel, built at a height of 13,000 ft, the foundation stone for which was laid in 2019, providing all-weather connectivity to the border areas,” the PM told the publication.

PM Modi further gave an account of staggering investments made in the field of education and youth skill training in the region and how it was seeing the mushrooming of young talent, including the 4,000 start-ups taking birth in the last decade.

Stating the NDA government’s clear objectives to deal with insurgency-hit region, he said that the Centre signed a total of 11 peace agreements in the last 10 years, which played a pivotal role in reining in insurgency and bringing peace to the region.

“More than 9,500 insurgents have given up arms since 2014 and have returned to the mainstream. It has been possible because of Centre’s relentless persuasion towards this purpose,” he elaborated.

“Compared to 2014, there has been 71 per cent reduction in insurgency incidents in 2023. Security force casualties have come down by 60 per cent and civilian deaths by 82 per cent in the same period. Due to the improved security situation, the AFSPA has been withdrawn from most parts of the Northeast,” said the Prime Minister, explaining the factors behind the situation returning to normalcy.