Guwahati: Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the Northeast has faith in Modi’s guarantee, and he has resolved to work day and night to fulfil the guarantees. The PM also acknowledged the aspirations of the youth in the NE to witness their region’s development, akin to that of East Asia, and expressed his determination to turn their dreams into reality.
PM Modi inaugurated and laid the foundation stones for projects worth Rs 11,600 crore here, while saying, “These development projects will boost Assam’s connectivity to the Northeast states as well as neighbouring countries in Southeast Asia.” PM reaffirmed the huge role to be played by Assam and NE states to make India the third largest economy in the world by 2047.
Pointing out the record number of tourist footfall in the North East in the last 10 years, the Prime Minister said that even though the beauty of the region existed before this, the number of tourists remained extremely low owing to the violence and lack of resources due to the neglect shown by previous governments. Mentioning poor air, rail, and road connectivity in the region where travelling from one district to another took hours, PM Modi credited the double-engine government at the centre and state level for all-around development in the state.
PM Modi informed the people here that the government has increased the region’s development expenditure four times. Drawing comparisons to before and after 2014, the Prime Minister stated that the length of railway tracks laid was increased by more than 1900 kilometres, the railway budget was boosted by almost 400 percent, and 6,000 kilometres of new national highways were constructed in the last 10 years compared to 10,000 kilometres until 2014.
Highlighting the significance of Indian pilgrimage sites and temples, the Prime Minister emphasized that these places symbolize an indelible mark of our civilization over thousands of years, showcasing how Bharat has held on to every crisis it has faced. We have witnessed how the civilizations that were considered prosperous in the past now stand in ruins. PM Modi lamented the post-independence governments for starting a trend of being ashamed of one’s own culture and identity for political gains and failing to understand the importance of Bharat’s holy places. He said that it has been rectified in the past 10 years with the help of policies focusing on both ‘Vikas’ (development) and ‘Virasat’ (heritage). Explaining the benefits of these policies for the people of Assam, PM Modi stressed the importance of connecting historical and spiritual places in the state with modern facilities, a move aimed at preserving these sites and accelerating development.
“Ease of living is the priority of the present government,” PM Modi remarked as he mentioned building 4 crore pucca houses for the poor, supplying tapped water connections, electricity, and cooking gas connections under the Ujjwala Yojna, and the construction of toilets under the Swachh Bharat.
Sharing the Centre’s vision, the Prime Minister affirmed his commitment to simplifying the lives of every citizen, a commitment that he claimed is also reflected in this year’s budget announcements. This year, the government has pledged to spend Rs 11 lakh crore on infrastructure, adding that an expenditure of this kind on infrastructure creates more employment and gives momentum to development. He also pointed out that the total infrastructure budget for Assam in the last 10 years before 2014 stood at Rs 12 lakh crore.
The Prime Minister reiterated the government’s emphasis in the last 10 years on electricity supply to each home. He mentioned the decision taken in this year’s budget to reduce the electricity bills to zero with the initiation of the Rooftop Solar Scheme, where the government will assist one crore families to install solar rooftops. “With this, their electricity bill will also be zero, and ordinary families will be able to earn by generating electricity at home,” he added.
The Prime Minister emphasized the importance of establishing targets and asserted that previous governments lacked objectives and failed to work hard. He envisions the Northeast developing similarly to East Asia, facilitating expanded connectivity in North and East Asia. Numerous roads in the state are set to be upgraded under the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation, transforming the North East into a trade hub. The Prime Minister acknowledged the aspirations of the youth in the Northeast to witness their region’s development akin to East Asia, expressing his determination to turn this dream into reality.