STATE TIMES NEWSNEW DELHI: Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Dr Jitendra Singh said here on Tuesday that Article 370 blocked Northeast success stories from being replicated in Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh. Addressing the Curtain Raiser event, as Chief Guest, on the eve of “North East Expo 2019” here today, Dr Jitendra Singh said, the revolutionary transformation that the North Eastern States of India have undergone over last five years of the Modi government, is of such an unimaginable magnitude that it is to be seen to be believed. His only regret sometimes is that while Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been extraordinarily indulgent and patronizing to uplift the peripheral regions of India, Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh could not receive the same benefits as North East, simply because of the vested embargoes imposed in the name of Article 370. Dr Jitendra Singh said, for example, while a small North Eastern State like Mizoram with a population of mere 10 lakh has in the last two years set up Indian subcontinent’s first of its kind specialised “Citrus Food Park” with Israel’s collaboration which has been hailed as a “Centre of Excellence”, Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh, despite their abundant food and horticulture resources, could not achieve a single such achievement. Similarly, he said, while India’s first “Bamboo Industrial Park” has become operative on the Guwahati-Shillong highway, why could J&K not have an Industrial set-up devoted to Saffron or Pashmina, or in the case of fruit to apple or strawberry. Dr Jitendra gave full credit to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s extraordinary support for the development of North Eastern region and said, the Modi government has brought the fruits of development uniformally to the remotest and the most difficult terrains of the region, without any extraneous considerations whatsoever. The priorities of the NDA government, said Dr Jitendra Singh, are evident from the fact that Narendra Modi as Prime Minister travelled to North East as many as thirty times during his first five years term, while Amit Shah was possibly the first National President of any political party to have started his tenure with an extensive tour of the region, spending two days each in each of the eight States. Appreciating the efforts of “All India Women’s Education Fund Association (AIWEF)” to promote Khadi products from North East, Dr Jitendra Singh said, the Modi government has been forthcoming in every new initiative, which is evident from the fact that the 100 years old Indian Forest Act has been amended to exempt home grown bamboo which has its largest store house in the North East.
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