At a NITI Aayog meeting, the CM made several proposals for improving connectivity in the region, and lessons which the mainland can learn from the NE state
Guwahati: At the fifth Governing Council of NITI Aayog meeting on Saturday, Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K Sangma suggested a number of proposals to be undertaken by the government for better trade and business, while submitting ideas from the state.
He spoke about improving connectivity with two new highways: a 610-km-long eight-lane highway connecting Guwahati-Shillong-Dawki-Chittagong port; and a 100-km parallel highway to NH-37, connecting Meghalaya to West Bengal, up till Hilli, a checkpoint on the India-Bangladesh border.
Sangma also suggested of setting up a Presidential Retreat in Northeast, which will buttress development and connectivity in the region.
Currently, there are two such retreats in India: The Retreat Building, Mashobra, Shimla in north India, and Rashtrapati Nilayam, Bolarum, Hyderabad in south. The President visits both the places at least once a year, and during his stay there, the core office shifts to that place. The retreats are a symbol of unity of the diverse cultures and people of India.
The chief minister of the hill state spoke about ‘Uber for Farmers’, an initiative which is connecting 17,000 farmers with agricultural specialists and to buyers in Meghalaya. He suggested that the idea could be nationalised and link agrarians to trucks and necessary equipment.
The toll-free no. 1917, happens to be the year when Mahatma Gandhi started the Satyagraha movement.
Further, Sangma endorsed the idea of Northeast states signing Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with bigger states, like Maharashtra and Meghalaya have for corporate social responsibility activities in the field of horticulture.
The CM also proposed Meghalaya’s water policy, which works on water related issues like conservation, budgeting, rainwater harvesting, waste water management and drinking water provisions.
Earlier this month, he said, the water policy is a holistic approach to mitigate water crisis. The policy includes steps for budgeting, prioritizing and equitisation of water supply, and protecting and conservation of catchment and spring shed areas.