North East and PM- DevINE 

North East and PM- DevINE 

PM Devine Scheme

The Topic is based on PM Devine Scheme. It talks about the Indian Economic & Social Development significance of the Development of North East.

Syllabus North East and PM- Devine:

Prelims: social and economic development,

Mains: GS II, Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

Key Points to Ponder:

What’s the ongoing story?

  • Prime Minister’s Development Initiative for North East Region (PM Devine Scheme) has got approval from The Union Cabinet.  
  • This new scheme was announced in the Union Cabinet Budget year.

 What is PM Devine Scheme?

  • This is a Central Sector Scheme that will be completely funded by the central government.
  • This scheme will be implemented by the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) through North Eastern Council or Central Ministries/ agencies.
  • The scheme will have an outgoing of 6600 crores for four years from 2022 to 2025 to 2025 to 2026(remaining years of the 15th Finance Commission period).
  • This scheme will open up the doors of better infrastructure, supporting industries, and social development and also generate livelihood activities for the women and youths, which will lead to employment generation.
  • The measures will be taken to ensure reasonable operations and maintenance of the projects approved under the scheme so that they can sustain.
  • To the extent possible, the Engineering –procurement-Construction (EPC) basis will be implemented so the construction risk of time and cost overrun can be minimized.
  • Efforts will be made to complete the PM-Devine projects by 2025-26 so that there are no committed liabilities beyond this year
PM Devine Scheme

Pic: PM Devine Scheme

Objectives of the Scheme 

  • Fund infrastructure convergently, in the spirit of PM Gati Shakti;
  • Subsidize the  social development projects based on the felt needs of the NER;
  • Facilitate  livelihood activities for youth and women
  • Fill the development gaps in various sectors.

Why are North earthen regions underdeveloped?

Historical Legacy:

  • The Northeastern region of India never got the affirmed focus and attention as it is considered isolated.
  • During British India, communication was mainly practiced through Bangladesh(East Bengal ). 
  • At that time the British granted an autonomous tribal region to them, and after independence, the tribals wanted to keep their independence.
  • The entire area comes under a single state of Assam, except Sikkim. Gradually, hived to form new individual states and now comprises 1/3rd of its earlier territory.

Human issues:

  • “Nagas” does not indicate a  single tribe. They consist of 17 majors and around 20 sub-tribes.
  • Each tribe has its own dialects, traditions, culture, and regional influence. These groups of tribes with conflicting interests make it difficult to negotiate.

Economic Neglect:

  • Lack of better communication between the states.
  • Very minimal railways connectivity, however, a new line has been laid up to Imphal the capital city of Manipur. Also, the road connectivity is poor. and the area is prone to natural disasters like earthquakes, landslides etc.
  • The economical assistance which has been provided by the government is being poured into the pockets of politicians and the common citizens do not get the benefit of it.
  • A huge amount of the funds ends up as ‘taxes’ to rebellious organizations. Thus, in effect, the central funds are a bank-rolling insurgency.

Separatist Movements:

  • The ‘Naga Club’  was formed in 1918, to boost the idea of Naga Separatists. The demands of Naga Separatists are totally impermissible, as it would have intensified the demands of other regions too.
  • The central government has introduced counter-insurgency operations to suppress these demands

The Northeast states of India

 Importance of North East to India

 Strategic Location: 

  •  It is situated between Bangladesh to the west, Myanmar to the east, and Bhutan and China to the north,  this is one of the regions why the north-eastern states of India remain geographically isolated from the rest of the country

It is a gateway to Southeast Asia: 

  • With ASEAN engagement becoming a central pillar of India’s foreign policy direction. As the northeast act as the physical bridge known as the chicken neck, between India and Southeast Asia, it plays a very crucial role in the country
  • India’s Act East Policy:
  • India’s Act East Policy places the northeastern states on the territorial border line of eastward engagement of India.

Economic Significance: 

  • The North Eastern region is rich with natural resources, like oil and gas, agro- horticultural resources, mineral deposits, immense hydroelectric potential, and important forest resources.
  • The Indian government has been making intensive efforts for the economic development of this region.
  • The region has abundant natural resources, around 34% of the country’s water resources, and almost 40% of India’s hydropower potential.

Tourism Potential: 

  • North Eastern Region (NER) of India has enormous resource potential to develop tourism.
  • This region of our nation is called the home to many wildlife sanctuaries like Kaziranga National Park famous for the one-horned rhinoceros, Manas National Park, Nameri, Orange and Dibru Saikhowa in Assam.

What is chicken’s neck or Siliguri corridor?

  • The Siliguri Corridor, or Chicken’s neck, is a narrow stretch of land located in West Bengal, that connects the northeastern states of India with other states of  India.
  • The corridor is just 17 km wide.
  • It is surrounded by Nepal, Bangladesh, and Bhutan.
  • The corridor reaches out from the Darjeeling, Jalpaiguri, and Terai regions of West Bengal towards the North East.

Significance of Siliguri Corridor

siliguri corridor

Pic: Siliguri Corridor

  • The region has  significance for trade, commerce, and tourism for West Bengal, Nepal, Bhutan, and North Eastern states  
  • All land trade between the North East and the other states of India happens through this corridor.
  • The corridor is the center  of a rail and road network connecting West Bengal and the other states to the North East,
  • It is also the center of the railway network that connects to the strategic military formations along the Line of Actual Control (LAC). 
  •  It is from here that a road network moves towards the strategically important Tawang town in Arunachal Pradesh.

Other projects for the northeast region:

  • 4,000 km of roads, 20 railway projects for 2,011 km, and 15 air connectivity projects are being developed.
  • 4000 km of road connectivity, 20 railway projects of 2,011 km, and almost 15 air connectivity projects have been developed.
  •  To provide more developed and cheap trade connectivity, three major   National  river ways are being developed namely, nations waterway_1on the river  Ganga, National Waterways-2 on the Brahmaputra, and National Waterways-16 on Barak
  • North Eastern Region Power System Improvement Project (NERPSIP) is a very crucial project set up for the economic development of the northeastern region as it will escalate the Intra – State Transmission and Distribution systems.

Challenges and way forward

  • The region is isolated geographically from the rest of India, which makes the interrelatedness to the region difficult.
  • The inadequate condition of basic l infrastructure facilities is the main reason for the underdevelopment of the economic condition of this region.
  • There are ongoing territorial disputes between states and between nations, within the northeastern region that frequently intensifies old border disputes and divergent ethnic, tribal, or cultural affiliations.
    north east construction

    Pic: Projects for the Northeast Region


The Times of India 

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