Northeast fund utilisation has increased by 21%: Dr Jitendra

Excelsior Correspondent
AGARTALA (TRIPURA), Apr 10: Northeast fund utilization has increased by 21%, ever since the Modi Government took over in May 2014.
Disclosing this at the launch of the first-of-its-kind NITI Aayog Forum for Northeast here today, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) of the Ministry of Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy & Space, Dr Jitendra Singh cited figures to state that while the expenditure by Central Ministries in Northeast in the year 2014-15 was Rs. 24,483.92 crores, it increased to Rs. 29,634.42 crores in 2016-17. He said, the Northeast Budget allocated to 54 non-exempted Union Ministries, excluding Railways, stands at Rs. 47,994.88 crores for the current year 2018-19. This, he said, is 17.14% higher than the Revised Estimates (RE) of Rs. 40,971.69 crores in the just concluded financial year of 2017-18.
The glittering launch ceremony of NITI Aayog Forum was attended, among others, by Vice-Chairman NITI Aayog Dr Rajiv Kumar, Chief Minister Tripura, Biplab Kumar Deb, Chief Minister Nagaland Neiphiu Rio, Chief Minister Meghalaya Conrad Sangma, Deputy Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh, Ministers from eight different States of Northeast, Chief Secretaries of the eight North-Eastern States, in addition to Secretary DoNER Naveen Verma, Secretary North-Eastern Council (NEC) Ram Muivah and other senior officers of the Ministry of DoNER, North-Eastern Council and NITI Aayog.
Dr Jitendra Singh said, it has primarily been possible because of personal interest and indulgence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi that Northeast has received a special attention from the Government of India. This, he said, has not only resulted in initiation of new and innovative schemes for the region, but has also put the long delayed projects on the fast-track to completion.
Among the firsts-of-its-kind special schemes for Northeast, Dr Jitendra Singh mentioned North-East Industrial Development Scheme (NEIDS), North-East Tourism Development Council (NETDC), Special Road Development Scheme for Northeast, Amendment in 1927 Indian Forest Act to exempt “home grown Bamboo” and the landmark decision to provide 100% Central Funding to the projects of Northeast which was earlier in the ratio 90:10 on the pattern of the other Hill States.
Dr Jitendra Singh hoped that with the coming in of exclusive NITI Aayog Forum for Northeast, there will be healthy synergism between the Ministry of DoNER, North-East Council and NITI Aayog, which would help in streamlining the projects in a more optimal manner and at the same time, also help identify the constraints and the means to overcome these constraints.
Speaking on the occasion, Vice-Chairman NITI Aayog Dr Rajiv Kumar said that the first-of-its-kind region based exclusive NITI Aayog Forum was being set up for Northeast. From the experience of this new initiative, he said, similar region-based NITI Aayog Fora could be set up for the other parts of the country as well.


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