New Delhi , Jan 1 : A new scheme, Prime Minister’s Development Initiative for North-East, PM-DevINE was announced by the Union Minister for Finance & Corporate Affairs, Smt Nirmala Sitharaman while presenting the Union Budget 2022-23 here today.
The Finance Minister stated that the PM-DevINE will be implemented through the North-Eastern Council. An initial allocation of Rs. 1,500 crore will be made for the new scheme. It will fund infrastructure, in the spirit of PM GatiShakti, and social development projects based on felt needs of the North-East.
This will enable livelihood activities for youth and women, filling the gaps in various sectors, the Minister explained. However, it will not be a substitute for existing central or state Schemes. While the central ministries may also pose their candidate projects, priority will be given to those posed by the states.
Sitharaman said the Centre will fund infrastructure improvement projects and several social development projects will be introduced in the northeastern region. This is likely to create more job opportunities and help improve the employment sector in the eight northeastern states – Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim.
The initial list of projects to be funded under the Scheme is given below:
Establishment of Dedicated Services for the Management of Paediatric and Adult Haemotolymphoid Cancers in North East India, Guwahati (Multi-State) – Rs 129 crore.
NECTAR Livelihood Improvement Project (Multi-State) – Rs 67 crore.
Promoting Scientific Organic Agriculture in North East Indian (Multi-State) – Rs 45 core
Construction of Aizawl By-pass on Western Side – Rs 500 crore.
Gap funding for Passenger Ropeway system for Pelling to Sanga-Choeling in West Sikkim – Rs 64 crore.
Gap funding for Eco-friendly Ropeway (Cable Car) from Dhapper to Bhaleydhunga in South Sikkim – Rs 58 crore.
Pilot Project for Construction of Bamboo Link Road at different locations in Various Districts in the State of Mizoram – Rs 100 crore.
Finance Minister Sitharaman also said that the key focus will be on “border villages with sparse population”. “Limited connectivity and infrastructure often get left out from the development gains. Such villages on the northern border will be covered under the new Vibrant Villages Programme,” Sitharaman said.
The activities will include the construction of village infrastructure, housing, tourist centres, road connectivity, provisioning of decentralised renewable energy, direct to home access for Doordarshan and educational channels, and support for livelihood generation. Additional funding for these activities will be provided. Existing schemes will be converged, Sitharaman said.
Last year, the government said the budgetary allocation for development of the northeastern states had doubled in the last seven years with around Rs 68,000 crore being allotted in the 2021-2022 fiscal.
( With PIB and Agencies inputs )