Cabinet approves schemes for development projects in NE

New Delhi [India]: The Union Cabinet concerning the development in the northeast, on Wednesday approved projects, including continuation of several existing schemes, upto March 2020.

The projects under the existing schemes of NEC, NLCPR (Central) and NERSDS will accrue socio-economic benefits to the people of North Eastern Region enhancing their capabilities and livelihood.

Presently, the major chunk of projects (599 projects out of 840) with 72.12 percent approved cost (Rs.5375.12 crore out of total Rs.7453.02 crore) and 66 percent of pending liabilities (Rs 1518.64 crore out of Rs 2299.72 crore) for all ongoing projects is funded through “the Schemes of NEC- Special Development Project”-wherein funds for the selected projects are shared between Centre and State on 90:10 basis and the execution of work is done by the respective State Governments.

Apart from this, some funds are provided – both Revenue and Capital – as 100 percent Central funding basis, implemented through State and Central agencies.

The Scheme of NEC – Special Development Project will be changed to be a Central Sector Scheme with 100 percent grant, instead of the earlier block grant on 90:10 basis. The remaining component will continue to be funded on 100 percent Central funding basis as at present.

Apart from the above, NEC is also implementing “North Eastern Road Sector Development Scheme – Programme Component” for upgradation of the important and strategic inter-state roads. Transferred from DONER to NEC for implementation, the scheme is 100 percent Centrally funded. A sum of Rs. 1000 crore has been allocated under the scheme.

Another Scheme namely “Non Lapsable Central Pool of Resources-Central [NLCPR (Central)]”, presently funded by M/o DoNER, provides resources to the concerned line Ministries/their agencies for projects like Agartala-Akhaura Rail Link, checking erosion in Majuli Island. This Scheme will also be transferred to NEC for implementation.

Previously, there was no fixed arrangement for distributing the funds into State or Central component. Now, the total funds available to NEC are proposed to be bifurcated in two components (State component – 60 percent and Central component – 40 percent). The State component would be utilised for the projects in each State as per their share on normative allocation basis. For the Central component, the projects having regional character, requiring Inter-Ministerial intervention are to be taken up. Priority sectors have been identified such as bamboo; piggery; regional tourism; higher education, tertiary healthcare & special intervention in backward areas; livelihood project; Science & Technology Interventions in NER; Survey & Investigation and NER Promotion.

By the above, a clear apportionment or division of sectors is ensured between DoNER and NEC to avoid duplication.

In order to give a boost to the Tourism in NE Region, amongst other things, the outstanding liabilities in tourism sector under Product Infrastructure Development for Destinations & Circuits (PIDDC) may also be addressed.

Further, a mechanism on the pattern of Standing Finance Committee (SFC) with representatives from the concerned line Ministries and from Ministry of DoNER would be constituted under the Chairmanship of Secretary, NEC for approval of the projects costing between Rs. 5-15 crore. This is aimed at bringing synergy with programmes of other Union Ministries and avoiding of duplication through process of SFC. (ANI)