Union Minister Nisith Pramanik on Saturday said the migration of people from border areas, in search of more facilities, will be minimised in the next two years, with effective implementation of the Centre’s new Vibrant Village Programme (VVP).
Through the VVP announced in the Union Budget FY 2022-23, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is planning to rehabilitate people living along the international borders by providing them with all basic facilities, Pramanik said.
VVP is aiming at improving infrastructure in villages along India's border with China, in States like Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and Arunachal Pradesh.
The Union minister, who is on his maiden visit to the state capital, was speaking to journalists during the North East Festival, as part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav celebrations.
Activities under the VVP include building infrastructure such as housing, tourist centres, road connectivity, providing decentralised renewable energy, direct-to-home access for Doordarshan and educational channels, and support for livelihood generation.
Additional funding for these activities would be provided while the existing schemes would be converged and their outcomes would be defined and monitored constantly, the Union Minister of State for Home told reporters here.
Pointing out that development of the northeastern region is the prime focus of the government, Pramanik said with development as the main agenda of the NDA government, the focus is also on border security, and improved connectivity.
“In the next few years, there will be a massive change in the region and in the next two years Arunachal Pradesh will witness a sea change in border areas with the accelerated pace of development being undertaken by the Centre,” Pramanik said.
The north-eastern state of Arunachal Pradesh shares a long international border with Bhutan to the west, China to the north and north-east, and Myanmar to the east.
Policy for border areas
Replying to a question regarding a state-specific border area development programme keeping in view the strategic importance of Arunachal Pradesh, Pramanik said that he has invited state Home minister Bamang Felix and his team to New Delhi for discussion in this regard.
“We will discuss how to formulate a state-specific policy for border areas in Arunachal Pradesh and how to effectively implement the vibrant village programme in the state. If necessary, we will make changes in the programme module which will suit the state’s requirement,” he added.
Pramanik said, the Centre is working towards the development of over 200 tribal communities in the country, a majority of which are from the North-eastern states.
Earlier, addressing the function, Pramanik said that the proposal given by Felix for the inclusion of the entire Arunachal Pradesh under the Border Area Development (BADP) programme would be discussed and a decision would be taken soon.
Highlighting that the Centre is serious about all-round developmen, the Union Minister lauded the unity in diversity of the State, saying that despite having diverse cultures, the synergies between all tribes, comprising 26 major tribes and over a hundred sub-tribes, in the state are excellent.
Referring to the upcoming sports infrastructure in the State, Pramanik said that the government wants sportsmen from the State to excel in international events and make the country proud.
“We also want tourism activities to increase in the state with improved connectivity. Arunachal Pradesh will soon become a paradise for tourists,” he added.