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North East gets Rs 2,682 crore, substantial hike across ministries

New Delhi, Feb 1: Even though Fince Minister Arun Jaitley did not announce any new initiative for the North-East Region (NER), the budgetary allocation for the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DONER) saw a hike of about Rs 158 crore. According to allocations for important ministries, Rs 2,682 has been allocated for 2017-18 for the DoNER Ministry against Rs 2,524 for 2016-17. The government’s budget also suggests an increase of nearly 35 per cent in allocation for the north-eastern region across all ministries.

Allocation for the NER across all ministries in the Union Budget 2017-18 was Rs 43,250 against Rs 32,180 for 2016-17, reads the budget copy.

Special attention has been paid to the economic development of the region from the Eighth Plan period onwards.

In October 1996, the central government’s announcement of “New Initiatives for the NER” included a number of measures for the development of the region, which covered policy changes, special area development and development projects in key sectors.

In order to mobilise fincial resources, a policy decision was taken to earmark at least 10 per cent of the plan budgets of the central ministries/departments for development of the north-eastern states.

Ten per cent of the annual plan budget of 52 ministries of the union government is earmarked every year for spending in the NER since 1998-99. The region has 7.9 per cent (2,62,179 sq.km out of 32,87,263 sq.km) of India’s land mass and 3.76 per cent (4.55 crore out of 121 crore) of population, according to the Census 2011. (IANS)