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“Govt has increased the allocation for the development of the North-Eastern Region by more than four times in the last 10 years:”  President Droupadi Murmu.

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New Delhi, 27 June, 2024: The President of India, Smt Draupadi Murmuhighlighted the efforts of the Union Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways in her inaugural speech in the 18th Lok Sabha session here today. The President also spoke about the large scale work on inland waterways for the first time. The Northeast to benefit immensely from the large scale work on inland waterways, assured President Murmu. Govt has also increased the allocation for the development of the North-Eastern region by more than four times in last 10 years.

Reacting to this notable mention in the President’s Speech, the Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways, Sarbananda Sonowal said, “Hon’ble President’s remark of the development in the waterways sector of North-East India reflects our Government’s uninterrupted journey towards progress. Under the strong leadership of Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Ji, our ministry is diligently working to empower the rich, complex & dynamic riverine network of the country, especially in the areas where we see potential usage of inland waterways as conduits of logistical transfer with economies of scale. Over the years, the ministry has undertaken several ambitious initiatives for the comprehensive development of the waterways sector in Assam and the North-East. Under the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi ji, our effort in this regard shall continue unabated as we remain firm in our resolve to enable and empower the waterways, thereby, unlock the tremendous economic potential it possess.”

The Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways has already sanctioned ₹645 crores for implementation of 10 major waterway projects on the Brahmaputra under the ministry’s flagship Sagarmala project. These are being implemented with an aim to accelerate the waterway infrastructure of the Brahmaputra to enhance river tourism and public transport in Assam. Under the Sagarmala programme of the Union Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, 100% funding of the Central Government will be implemented in Assam.

Sarbananda Sonowal further added, “Under the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Ji, we are making relentless efforts to unlock the immense potential of the country’s waterways by exploring new avenues. The Brahmaputra is a lifeline for the people of North-East India and Assam. Modi Ji has guided us to harness the immense energy potential of the Brahmaputra and accelerate waterway infrastructure to develop an alternative, cost-effective, eco-friendly, and efficient transport system. These 10 projects, to be developed under the ambitious Sagarmala Programme of the Government of India, are specially designed to enhance connectivity in Assam and the North-East, improve public transport, and foster economic development. These Sagarmala projects will focus on various aspects including ferry infrastructure, modernisation of shipping, and construction of terminals.”

More than ₹1,000 crore worth of projects have already been launched under the Sagarmala programme, with a focus on the development of the northeastern states, including Assam. Currently, projects worth over ₹760 crore are underway in Assam alone, reflecting the government’s unwavering commitment to the region’s progress.

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