On the second day of the inaugural Republic Summit, Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis and Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal addressed the crowd on the topic 'The Synergy to Surge', speaking on various issues including the progress of North East and the need for NRC to tackle the illegal migrant threat.
The two Chief Ministers began by giving out their views on what took so long for India to recognise and develop the North-East corridor. Assam CM was the first to express his opinion on the matter, mentioning how PM Modi has given attention to a part of the country which was ignored in the past.
"Within four and a half years of PM Modi's regime, there has been lot of changes. There has been surge in the development work, be it air communication, road communication, rail communication, water communication, highway connectivity. He is the first PM to discover North-East in its true essence. He firmly believed North-East is essential for India's growth. During Atal Bihari Vaj[ayee, he constituted the separate ministry for our special growth. After that, it is Modi ji, out of his special initiatives and special effort, who has done something. Congress got five decades, almost six, but they simply betrayed the entire region and they always considered North-East to be group of government depending on Centre's subsidies and financial grounds for sustenance. Their belief was that this is the only point where North-East to be confined. But after Modi became PM, he has made everybody realize about the potential of all the North-East states. That is how North-East is progressing first. And because of special support, attention by PM Modi, with certain ministers visiting the state, not as tourists, but with certain schemes to implemented in a time frame, the North-East is growing. Because of his support and blessings, North-East is becoming the centre of attraction," he said.
Devendra Fadnavis mentioned how the earlier governments (Congress) ignored that part of the country, and how the present ruling government is putting efforts in making things better.
"For the Congress government, North-East was a vote bank. There was no focus policy. The special focus policy started in the era of Atal Bihari Vajpayee who realised that if we alienate these states, they will break away. And forces which are anti-India were trying to usurp in all these states. So Atal ji was the first PM who started a focal policy for North-East. Unfortunately after that, the focus was shifted. It is only in the times on Atal ji and now that actual money goes for development. Otherwise we have seen ani-national activities on money given by Centre. Now, totally focussed work is done, and the North-East ministry, which was started by Atal ji, in today's time, has become one of the most important ministries, which is looking after every single work of development in North-East. All the facilities that are being provided integrates North-East to India. All the work shows North-East is integral part of India. And every citizen from North-East should think India thinks for North-East, and that is what is happening today," he added.
On the topic of the illegal migrants, both the CMs of their respective states felt that it is an issue of national security, and leaders like West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee should not play vote bank politics on such matters.
Sarbananda Sonowal stated that illegal migrants are a national problem and a very important issue. He then went into explaining about the 1985 Assam accord, which was signed under then PM Rajiv Gandhi, but never gained momentum, which in turn kept the Indo-Bangla borders open. The Assam CM then went onto add that Mamata Banerjee does not know the ground reality and is just playing politics, while also mentioning that once NRC is implemented, it will help the government know who are the illegal immigrants.
Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis agreed with his counterpart on this matter, and said that when it comes to a conflict between regional issue and a national issue, it's the latter which should always win. He further added stated that the West Bengal CM is taking the side of the illegal immigrants because of votebank politics, ignoring the threat they are for the nation.
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