Shillong: Vice-President M. Venkaiah Naidu on Monday observed that the North Eastern States had the potential to become the “growth engine” of the country, even as he called for fast-tracking of all the developmental activities in the region and utilization of Central funds for various projects with transparency and accountability.
“If we can expedite all projects here without delay or diversion, North Eastern states have the potential to become the growth engines of the country,” Naidu said after he laying the foundation stone for improvement and widening project of the Shillong-Dawki section of the National Highway 40 in Meghalaya’s State capital.
Governor Satya Pal Malik, Chief Minister Conrad Sangma, Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong, Chief Secretary Rebecca Vanessa Suchiang among others were present at the function
Noting that “peace is prerequisite for development and development”, the Vice President voiced happiness that insurgency is coming to an end in the North Eastern States.
“What is required is peace which is prerequisite for the progress of the people; all round development of the people in education, health, employment opportunities and connectivity which are vital to the people of the North East. Because of the fear of the gun, many things have been obstructed,” he observed.
“There is a need to put down the insurgency and to have a dialogue with the militant groups and see that they give up arms and join the peace process,” the Vice President underscored.
“Now it is time that we must utilize this peaceful atmosphere and create a proper ecosystem for the development of the state in a fast track manner,” he emphasised.
“People should know what is happening. People should have information. People who are in charge of these programmes should be held accountable. The contractors, the engineers, the administrators, everybody should be made accountable,”Naidu stressed.
The Vice President also emphasized that there should be “zero tolerance to corruption”, which, he said is the “enemy of development” and urged people to take advantage of digital technology.
“Everything should be made online so that there is no need for standing in a queue. Going and standing on a line, waiting for our turn should be totally avoided. Benefits should reach the people directly. Whatever, benefits the government is giving, should go directly to people’s pocket,” Naidu spelt out.