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Mon, 30 Mar 2020

Northeast Today

CENTRAL GOVT. PLANS TO WIN OVER SIKKIM ORGANICALLY

CENTRAL GOVT. PLANS TO WIN OVER SIKKIM ORGANICALLY
February 19
14:46 2020

After the anti CAA protests have slowly lessened, the Central government is using organic farming and tourism packages to reach out to people in Sikkim and to ensure benefits for all sections of the society in this Northeastern state. Northeast Today reports

The protests in the North East India opposing the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) is slowly dying down and losing steam and the central government has taken it as the right time to reach out to the people and convince them of the good intention of
the government.

Knowing the rich potential of organic farming and tourism in Sikkim, the central government is planning to reach out to the people of Sikkim, through the government of Sikkim with several newly designed packaged.

“Sikkim is strategically located and its development is very important for the government of India, but we also have to see the areas where massive investment can be made so that maximum people from the state benefits,” said a senior minister in the BJP government. Now after the anti CAA protests have slowly lessened, the government is taking this as an opportunity to reach out to the people and to ensure benefits for all sections of the society in the state.

“Due to its location and the hilly terrain—only selected and small industries will be suitable in the state, and the government is working in that angle to design a special package for initiatives for the inclusive development of the state of Sikkim,” said the minister.

The government had promoted hydro power projects in the state, but many of these were met with heavy resistance from the local public and environmental activists over the issues of displacement and riparian rights, but now the government wants to promote and invest in the areas of organic cultivation and tourism.

“Sikkim is well known as an organic farming location, and the government wants to innovate and promote it as a global destination. The central government is working on this already,” said a senior government official posted at New Delhi.

“Sikkim is largely an agriculture based state, and agro based initiatives and small industries will help the state’s population. The government is planning to go ahead with such initiatives,” said the official.

Another area where the government is focusing on is Tourism—not massive tourism projects, but the promotion of rural homesteads and development of newer tourism circuits in the state.

“The state of Sikkim has the potential to be developed both as an organic agriculture and rural tourism destination in line with the ambitious Act East policy of the Government of India. Since the state is already an attractive destination, such initiatives could make it a much sought after destination from South Asian countries,” said the official.

Sikkim is also enjoying political stability at the moment, as the state has a majority government and it is in alliance with the BJP led NDA government at the centre.

Ironically, the main opposition party in Sikkim at the moment is the BJP— which is an alliance with the ruling party Sikkim Krantikari Morcha, as an ally.

According to sources, the government is planning a major investment event on the areas of organic agriculture and allied areas, and small scale tourism in the state soon, and it is likely to be attended by top ministers of the present BJP led NDA government, and could also include Prime Minister Narendra Modi as well.

According to sources, the government is not planning to encourage more mega industries in the state but wants maximum investment in smaller industries.

“The present government wants to ensure some benefits to even the last person in a village—who might even not be educated, and for such people to get benefits—huge industries is not the solution at all, and the solution is smaller industrial initiatives with tailor made solutions taking account of the needs and requirements,” said a senior government official looking after affairs in the North East region.

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