Sonowal seeks PM’s intervention to complete ATH early

GUWAHATI: Assam Chief Minister, Sarbananda Sonowal has sought intervention of Prime Minister, Narendra Modi to ensure early completion Asian Trilateral Highway (ATH) from Mae Sot in Thailand via Myanmar up to Moreh in Manipur which would go a long way in restoration trade links of the North East with ASEAN.

Sonowal who met the Prime Minister on New Delhi on Wednesday, in a memorandum observed that early completion of the Trilateral Highway was essential that with the path-breaking Act East Policy, the BJP-led NDA government has repositioned the North East region as the country’s expressway to the ASEAN.

In order to take full advantage of this initiative and to ensure that the North East Region becomes the “New Engine” of India’s growth, Sonowal sought urgent intervention of the Prime Minister for early completion of the highway.

Referring to agreement with Bangladesh for access of Bangladesh Ports to Vessels from North East India, Chief Minister Sonowal requested the Prime Minister for reaching an agreement to use Chittagong and Mongla ports for boosting trade of the North East with rest of the country through Bangladesh. 

He also drew the attention of the Prime Minister for his intervention for the revival of two units Nagaon Paper Mill, Jagiroad and Cachar Paper Mill, Silchar of Hindustan Paper Corporation (HPC) in Assam. He also maintained that these two units are crucial not only in providing livelihood to more than 2000 but also about two lakh families who supply raw materials for these units. The revival of these two units is crucial to industrialization in the State.

Sonowalhanded over a memorandum to the PM urging the Central Government under his leadership for revival of flood management programme (FMP).

Sonowal said FMP was an important source of funding for taking up flood and erosion management work in the State. The revival of FMP would enable the State government to take up the flood protection works on a renewed momentum.

Sonowal also made it clear that Assam is one of the most disaster-prone states in India. Apart from flood being a major problem, river bank erosion also poses serious damage to the socio-economic scenario of the State.

 However, he maintained that since ‘river erosion’ is not included in the SDRF guidelines, quick and timely steps to counter erosion are not possible. He, therefore, urged upon the Prime Minister to take steps to consider ‘river erosion’ as eligible calamity for consideration of assistance under NDRF/ SDRF. Sonowal also sought Prime Minister’s support in expeditious approval of multiple Externally

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