New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi asserted on Friday that impediments to Manipur’s progress have been removed and its development has started at a fast pace, as he asked its people to not allow the forces that kept it down for 70 years to rear their head again.

Greeting the people of the poll-bound state on Manipur statehood day, Modi said in a speech that the state deserves peace and also deserves to be ridden of frequent bandhs and blockades, and added that it has been achieved under the leadership of Chief Minister N Biren Singh.

The BJP is in power in the state.

The prime minister said the government is committed to making Manipur the sports powerhouse of the country, and it has a key role in the vision of making the North-East the centre of its Act East policy.

Obstacles in the growth journey of the state have been removed and next 25 years are the “Amrit Kaal” (golden era) of Manipur’s development, he said.

He highlighted his continuous efforts to get a first-hand account of expectations and aspirations of the people of the state, and said this enabled him to get a better understanding of their feelings and expectation and find ways to tackle their problems.

The prime minister said under the ‘double-engine’ of development, a reference to the BJP being in the power at the state as well as the Centre, Manipur is getting long awaited facilities like railways.

Connectivity projects worth thousands of crores rupees are underway in the state, including Jiribam-Tupul-Imphal railway line. Similarly, with Imphal airport getting international status, connectivity of North-Eastern states with Delhi, Kolkata and Bengaluru has improved.

Manipur will also benefit from the India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral highway and upcoming Rs 9000 crore natural gas pipeline in the region, he said.

Assembly polls will be held in Manipur on February 27 and March 3. 

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