SHILLONG, March 16: The Chief Minister Dr. Mukul Sangma on Monday evening had a lively interaction with the delegation of senior jourlists from ASEAN countries who were on a two-day visit to the State as part of the ASEAN-India Media Exchange Programme sponsored by the Union Ministry of Exterl Affairs.
The delegation included 17 jourlists from South East Asian tions including Philippines, Myanmar, Thailand, Singapore, Laos, Vietm, Indonesia, Malaysia and Cambodia along with two officials from the Exterl Affairs Ministry. Minister for Information& Public Relations A L Hek, Chief Secretary, P B O Warjri and Director IPR, H M Shangpliang were also present with the Chief Minister during the interaction.
Welcoming the delegates, the Chief Minister highlighted on the “tural connect” that exists between the people of the North East and the South East Asia and the need to leverage upon the similarities and the potentialities of the two regions. He called upon the delegation to see what they can build up from their visit and also to give their views on how to upscale the level of hospitality, which according to him, is one of the inherent strengths of the State.
The interaction dwelt on the bottlenecks as well as the potentialities of the region and the measures being taken and the sectors being identified to promote economic relations between the two countries.
On the issue of militancy raised by one of the delegates, the Chief Minister replied that there is a problem of militancy in certain forms in almost all the states, but said that the issue is being taken up concertedly by all the NE states with the Centre.
Earlier in the day, the delegation visited the NEHU Campus here and had an interaction with the Pro-Vice Chancellor, Dean of Students’ Welfare and other faculty members. They also met the Secretary of North Eastern Council, A. Luikham, who briefed them on the topography, population, literacy and other aspects of the region.