From our correspondent
Itagar, September 8: Aruchal Pradesh Chief Minister bam Tuki has appealed Union Minister of Urban Development and Parliamentary Affairs Venkiah idu to consider inclusion of Itagar as Smart City by the Government of India. In a meeting with the Union Minister at New Delhi on Monday, Tuki along with Minister of Urban Development Pema Khandu and Parliamentary Secretary UD Techi Kasso made a strong case for considering Itagar under the Smart City project in addition to Pasighat which has already been included in the first list of 100 cities declared by the Centre. They also discussed other projects under the Ministry of Urban Development in the state, an official communiqué informed here on Tuesday.
The Union Minister informed that a sum of Rs. 73 Crore is being sanctioned for the projects in the State under Jawaharlal Nehru tiol Urban Remewal Mission (JNNURM). idu further assured funds for all ongoing schemes which have more than 50 per cent physical progress. The delegation apprised the Union Minister about the new prioritised schemes submitted under the 10 per cent lumsum Scheme for North Eastern Region (NER) and sought his intervention for early sanction of the same.
Tuki also held a series of meetings with key Ministers of the central government Monday evening and sought assistance on priority for overall development of the state. In the first meeting, Union Fince Minister Arun Jaitley assured that the Centre would provide all possible support to the state for the speedy setting up of the Greenfield Airport at Hollongi. While agreeing to the fact that the absence of an Airport in Aruchal Pradesh is an impediment towards holistic development, Jaitley opined that some kind of Air Connectivity should be provided even if it is on a smaller scale.
They also discussed the setting up of the Film, Television and Animation Institute in the state which was recently announced by the Centre. Upon the invitation of the Chief Minister Jaitley has agreed to visit the state to lay the foundation of the Greenfield Airport and the Film Institute at Jote sometime in January next year.
Later, the Chief Minister called on Union Minister of State for Power Piyush Goyal and discussed the ways to strengthen and further the hydropower sector in the state.
The Chief Minister apprised Goyal about the need to address several issues like solutions for basin studies, constitution of expert committee to expedite environmental clearances by the Centre and also the continuing impasse over the Lower Subansiri HEP. The Union Minister informed that his Ministry is in co-orditing with agencies such as Central Electricity Authority (CEA) and Central Water Commission (CWC) to expedite the issues related to the hydropower projects in the state. He said that the Centre is committed to exploit the hydropower potential in greater tiol interest.
The Chief Minister called for a balanced approach to amicably deal and achieve the objective of environmentally sustaible development. He further requested the Power Minister to provide schemes for modernisation of rural electricity networks in the State with special emphasis on the Rupa Tawang Transmission Circuit.
The Union Minister assured that he will immediately review the rural electricity scerio in the state with leading agencies such as Power Grid Corporation of India Limited (PGCIL) and others. It may be noted that a Comprehensive Scheme on Transmission for the North Eastern Region is being implemented under the aegis of the PGCIL in the state.
Goyal also sought separate proposals from the State Government for strengthening rural electrification in Aruchal Pradesh for examition and consideration by the Ministry of Power.
Tuki also called on Union Minister for Tribal Affairs Jual Oram and discussed the scope of several schemes under the Ministry. Oram said that he will expand the presence of Eklavya Model Residential Schools in the State and instructed his officials to examine the status of the same immediately. He advised the Chief Minister to improve sports infrastructure in the state to eble the talented tribal youth to develop their potential in various disciplines and assured his support towards the same, the communiqué added.