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Northeast Gets 19 National Waterways

FROM A CORRESPONDENT

NEW DELHI, July 18: As many as 19 new waterways have been declared as National Waterways (NWs) in North East. Disclosing this in the Parliament, DoNER Minister Dr Jitendra Singh said that 11 in Assam, five in Meghalaya, and one each in Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram and Nagaland have been declared as National waterways. Moreover, 100 per cent subsidy is being provided by the Ministry of Shipping under the Central Sector Scheme for development of IWT infrastructure in the north-eastern States.

In order to augment tele-connectivity, BharatNet is being implemented to create network infrastructure for providing Broadband connectivity to all Gram Panchayats (GPs) (approximately 2,50,000) in the country including Gram Panchayats (GPs) of North Eastern Region (NER).

“Under the Comprehensive Telecom Development Plan (CTDP) for NER, an agreement has been signed with BSNL to install 2817 mobile towers for providing mobile coverage in 4119 uncovered villages of Arunachal Pradesh and two districts of Assam with an estimated cost of Rs.2258 crore,” the Minister informed.

He said that Cabinet has approved revised proposal for provision of mobile services on 2G+4G technology for installation of 2173 mobile towers in 2374 uncovered villages and along National Highways for an estimated cost of Rs 3911 crore.

A New Greenfield Airport has been constructed at Pakyong (Gangtok) at a revised cost of Rs 553 crore suitable for operation of ATR-72 type of aircraft with Apron, terminal building of 100 pax.
Moreover, Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS-UDAN) has been launched to provide connectivity to unserved and under-served airports and promote regional connectivity by making the airfare affordable through Viability Gap Funding (VGF).

Major infrastructure projects have also been taken up in the North Eastern Region including Comprehensive Telecom Development Plan for the North-Eastern Region (NER) at an estimated cost of Rs 5336.18 crore.
Among the other projects are the Broad Gauging and Capital Connectivity Rail Projects; Comprehensive Scheme for Strengthening of Transmission & Distribution Systems (CSST&DS) in Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim at an estimated cost of Rs 4754.42 crore; Bharatmala Pariyojana; North East Road Sector Development Scheme (NERSDS) etc.

Dr Singh said that under the Bharatmala Pariyojana, road stretches aggregating to about 5301 km in NER have been approved for improvement. Of this, 3246 km of road length has been approved for the development of Economic Corridor in North East. To augment railway network, seven railway projects consisting of three new lines and four doublings have been taken up during the last three years and current year which are at various stages of execution.