Strengthen NEC to develop NE: CM Neiphiu Rio

Nagaland, Jan 24: Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio decried that the functional autonomy of the North East Council (NEC) has been significantly diluted over the years and called for strengthening the council by bringing out a clear vision for development of the NE region.

Addressing the 69th plenty of NEC at Shillong, Rio touched on the existence of significant overlap in the role of NEC and Minister of DoNER. He reminded that NEC can now sanction projects costing Rs. 15 crore and below only, as all projects above Rs. 15 crores are to be approved and sanctioned by DoNER.

Let us not forget that this Council has been set up out of necessity to develop the North Eastern region of the country. It is now almost 50 years since NEC was set up but the region still has a huge development deficit when compared to the mainland, he said.

On the issue of enhancing fund allocation to NEC, the Chief Minister reiterated that more funds should be made available to the council in order to meet its committed liabilities towards the development of the area and to enable it to go for new projects.

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The North Eastern Council, which has been set up with special needs, deserves more resources at its disposal. One way could be to channelize part of the NLCPR accruals through the NEC,” he suggested.

Neiphiu Rio also expressed dissatisfaction over the budget allocation of NEC, which was Rs 904 crore in 2020-21 and called for redrawing the NEC budget in such a way that more funds are made available under the State Component and the guidelines suitably modified.


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