Home minister visits Karimganj border with AASU leaders; Student body wants time-bound action plan
Silchar/ Guwahati, Jan 3: Union Home Minister Rajth Singh on Sunday visited Karimganj sector of the India-Bangladesh border in Assam and said the porous border will be sealed this year.
Singh, who reviewed the fencing project at Steamerghat, expressed his satisfaction at the progress of the work.
Two major issues that were stalling the project - protests by locals whose properties would be affected by the fencing and objection by Border Guards Bangladesh (BGB) in certain patches - have been resolved, he said.
Along with the fencing, the installation of flood lights will also be completed this year.
"Security measures have been tightened and this has resulted in drastic reduction in cross border crimes and also infiltration from that side of the border," Singh told jourlists.
After his visit to the border, Singh addressed a public rally organized by the Karimganj district committee of BJP at Ramkrish gar. He said the NDA government led by rendra Modi is committed to the welfare of all sections of people.
"There is no question of discrimition to any section. The Prime Minister has always stressed on development. The Silchar-Saurashtra Highway, better known as East-West Corridor, the dream project of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, is being given top priority by the government," he said.
"No power can stop it (the completion of East West Corridor)," Singh asserted, referring to the hurdles being created by the State government in some stretches of Dima Hasao district.
For improving surface connectivity across the Northeast region, the Union Home Minister said that Rs 12,000 crore has been earmarked for development of roads, a major part of which will be utilized in Assam.
For Barak Valley, he said a special development project has been planned which is expected to accelerate the socio-economic uplift of the area.
Singh expressed confidence that with various rebel groups in dialogue with the states and the Centre, peace will come to the region.
He appealed to groups which are still waging war against the State to join the mainstream.
"Unemployment and lack of development in the region were the reasons why misguided youths took up arms," he said.
"Our government has taken it as a challenge to bring all the rebel groups to the negotiating table. Without peace, there cannot be development. Various schemes and projects for Northeast have been taken up to accelerate the economic development of the region, he added.
On Monday, Singh will visit Dhubri sector of the India-Bangladesh border.
"The Minister had expressed his desire for a joint visit of the intertiol border during a semir organised by us in New Delhi last year. Today, he has come to visit. We have showed him the open intertiol border in Karimganj district. The Union Home Minister has assured that the border would be sealed within this year," said AASU president Dipanka Kumar th.
"The Home Minister has also informed us that the issues which have affected the sealing of the border in Karimganj district since November last year, have been taken up with Bangladesh government and sorted out amicably," th said, expressing happiness over the development.
In a press release later, the AASU said that the existing flood lights are functiol only for two hours as they are run on generators. "The State government has assured that electricity connection will be supplied to the area within seven days and after that the flood lights can be operated for 12 hours," the AASU team, which accompanied the Home Minister, said.
AASU chief advisor Sammujal Bhattacharya sought a time-bound action plan from the Union Home Minister. "We will be convinced only after the results," he said.