IMPHAL: The Centre will augment air connectivity in the Northeast in a massive way. The construction of a host of airports and heliports in areas along the international border, and the revival of some British-era roads and airports are part of the Centre’s scheme to make the Northeast the hub of the country’s trade with South East Asian countries.
Union minister of state for civil aviation, Jayant Sinha, said on Tuesday that the second round of bidding for UDAN for the Northeast would be nothing short of spectacular.
“I don’t want to go into details of the second round of bidding for UDAN, and all I can say is that it will be nothing short of spectacular. Ninety-two new air routes, 19 new airports and 17 new heliports will be opened in the Northeast,” Sinha said during the inaugural ceremony of the two-day Northeast Development Summit in Manipur capital Imphal. He said bidding for it was in the final stage.
Taking note of what Sinha had said, President Ram Nath Kovind, who attended the summit as the chief guest, said the proposed improvement of air connectivity in the Northeast would benefit the region.
“The Northeast has been in the heart of our imagination. Its diversity is an inspiration for all of us,” he said.
Communication by road, rail or air is a major bottleneck in the Northeast. Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu insisted on inclusive development. “The Nehruvian rule cast its shadow on development in the Northeast. If we say India has developed, a village on the China border must feel the change of new India,” he asserted.