Development of border villages resulting in early signs of reverse migration: Arunachal CM

Kibithoo (Arunachal Pradesh): Arunachal Pradesh has the longest international border in the country with a total length of 1,863 km

BY | Monday, 17 April, 2023
Union Minister for Home Affairs and Cooperation, Amit Shah at ‘Vibrant Village Programme’ at Kibithoo-a border village, in Arunachal Pradesh on 10 April 2023. (PIB)

The Arunachal Pradesh government has placed tremendous focus on development of border areas by improving connectivity and communication and strengthening agricultural activities, resulting in early signs of reverse migration, Chief Minister Pema Khandu said here.

“With half of the area and one-third of Arunachal Pradesh’s population living in border blocks, the state government has placed tremendous focus on development of border areas through such interventions,” Khandu told PTI during a visit to this village along the border with China.

For decades, villages situated in the remote border areas have suffered from various challenges like poor connectivity, mountainous terrain, weak resource base and infrastructural bottlenecks, forcing people to migrate to developed areas, according to officials.

Development of model village clusters, improving connectivity, strengthening the agriculture sector through ‘Atmanirbhar’ schemes and ‘Mission Krishi Veer’ to aggregate fresh fruits and vegetables to supply to armed forces are the key initiatives of the Arunachal Pradesh government aimed at all-round development of the border areas, they said.

Khandu further said the use of space technology and drones in the development of border areas, and partnerships with voluntary organisations are also being worked out. “These efforts of the Arunachal Pradesh government, with active help of the central government, have seen good results, and in some pockets, we have witnessed early signs of reverse migration,” he added.

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Arunachal Pradesh has the longest international border in the country with a total length of 1,863 km. Of this, the state’s boundary with Tibet stretches for 1,126 km.

“Lack of development and infrastructural bottleneck have led to significant out-migration of the population from border villages to the foothills. Fortunately, things are changing now with our special care,” Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein said.

The central government has recently launched the Vibrant Village Programme, which will cover 455 border villages of Aruanchal Pradesh with a mission to bring in vibrancy in these areas through various interventions such as income generating activities, connectivity and improving social infrastructure, he said.

The Arunachal Pradesh government has also launched the Golden Jubilee Border Village Illumination Programme, under which 50 micro, mini and small hydropower projects of 10-100 Kilowatt (KW) capacity were conceived at an estimated cost of Rs 200 crore, the deputy chief minister said.

Seventeen projects are being constructed under the programme in 11 districts and that will cover 123 border villages, benefitting 10,185 people, he said.

In addition, 15 establishments of the Indian Army, Indo-Tibetan Border Police and Border Roads Organisation, covering about 1,800 personnel, will be electrified under these 17 projects, Mein added.

Mein holds the charge of the power department of Arunachal Pradesh.

Written by Achinta Borah

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