GUWAHATI: Not quite happy perhaps with the way that the ministry of development of north eastern region (Doner) and the North Eastern Council (NEC) has performed, Ficci has firmed up plans to suggest to the union government that a North East Infrastructure Development Authority (NEIDA) be set up to coordinate and drive all major infrastructure development projects in the region.
Ranjit Barthakur, chairman of the North East advisory council (NEAC) of Ficci said that Doner’s mandate, when it was formed by the prevous BJP government in 2004, was to catalyse development in the northeast and integrate this region with the mainstream.
“I would meet union finance minister Arun Jaitley and Doner minister Gen (retd) V K Singh on June 12 with our proposal to set up the NEIDA instead” he said. Indeed, one of the first things the Modi government has realised is that over the years Doner has become more of a fund disbursal ministry than anything else.
FICCI has recommended that connectivity all along the north east needs to be optimally perfected and a 4,000 km ring road running parallel to the international borders should be laid out to connect all NE states.
This, Barthakur said, can easily be done through development of the Trilateral Highway, roads to Bangladesh via Silchar – Sylhet road, the Tura-Jamalpur-Dhaka-Petropole-Kolkata road and Sabroom- Chittagong road.