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Rajnath Singh chairs meeting of CMs of five States on India-China border in Gangtok

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Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has said that Central assistance for Border Area Development Programmes (BADP) had been increased from Rs. 990 crore in 2016-17 to Rs. 1,100 crore in the current financial year.
 
Chairing a review meeting with Chief Ministers of five states on the India-China border here yesterday, he said that the India-China border is undemarcated and extremely cold with very difficult terrain.
 
He said it was, thus, more important that impetus should be given to boost infrastructure and peace in the border areas.
 
Mr. Rajnath Singh praised the work of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) and said that the Centre was doing everything feasible for their smooth functioning in overcoming challenges. He stressed the need for the development of model villages in the border areas and said that innovative and concrete proposals are welcome. 
 
Implementation of Border Areas Development Programme (BADP) projects and construction of border infrastructures are being taken up with high priority, he added.
 
Sikkim Chief Minister Pawan Kumar Chamling said that the army, paramilitary and the Government of Sikkim are implementing a number of schemes under the BADP which are designed to meet the special developmental needs of the people living in remote and inaccessible border areas. 
 
Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat and Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu also briefed the Union Minister on the issues related to development. Issues concerning border infrastructure including border roads, Border Out Posts, critical infrastructure and coordination between the concerned States and ITBP stationed in states were some of the main issues deliberated upon in the meeting. 
 
The states of Jammu & Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh were represented by Senior Officers.
 
Earlier, Secretary, Department of Border Management, Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), Ms. Sanjeevanee Kutty presented the broad agenda of the meeting and apprised the participants about the various programmes and initiatives being taken for development of infrastructure and other facilities for the security personnel and the population living in border areas. Likewise, a brief presentation was made by ITBP Director General Krishna Chaudhary.
 
Later, addressing a press conference, Mr. Rajnath Singh expressed pleasure that such a review meeting concerning infrastructure and other issues in India-China border states was held for the first time. He appreciated the participation and inputs provided by the Chief Ministers of Uttarakhand, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim and officials from the states of Jammu & Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh. He put on record his appreciation for the contribution of Sikkim as the host state fort the meeting.
 
The Home Minister briefed the media about the various developmental projects being implemented by the MHA in the Border States. He also shared information regarding some of the projects and proposals in the pipeline. 
 
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Mr. Rajnath Singh stated that along with the border security forces, equal impetus should be given for the upliftment of civilian people living in these border areas. He stated that these people are the strategic assets of the country and their basic needs should be addressed. He added that the State Government of the India-China border states have been requested to look into these issues.
 
The Home Minister said his Ministry was focusing on model villages, and stated that in the last financial year, 41 model villages were created for which a financial allocation of Rs. 92 crore was made. He urged the State Governments to submit maximum proposals for model villages to the Central Government. He said the concerning border areas are to be jointly addressed by the State and the Central Government in a coordinated way. He stated that any hindrances like land acquisitions, forest clearances and allocation of quarries should be sorted out diligently and in a time bound manner by the State Government with support from the Central Government.
 
Earlier, the Home Minister visited Nathula Pass and addressed a Sainik Sabha during his visit to the ITBP Border Out Post (BOP) Sherathang near Nathu La. He also laid the foundation stone of various ITBP projects in Gangtok.
 
NNN
 
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