Union minister for home affairs Amit Shah(Amit Shah pledges to fast-track eastern zone development) pledged to sharpen focus for hastening the development of the eastern region. Shah welcomed all the members of the Council to the 24th meeting and hoped that this would be a fruitful meeting where all the issues having Centre-State and inter-State ramifications will be resolved with consensus.
He(Amit Shah pledges to fast-track eastern zone development) stressed that according to Prime Minister Narendra Modi‘s vision, after due deliberations, decisions taken by consensus should be implemented to further strengthen the federal structure of the country.
The Home Minister(Amit Shah pledges to fast-track eastern zone development) also expressed his satisfaction at the usefulness of the Zonal Council mechanism and informed that more than 70 percent of issues have been resolved based on the recent meetings of the Zonal Councils and remaining issues are also under resolution.
The Council also discussed the issues related to the Phulbari Dam under the agreement of 1978 signed by the States of Bihar and West Bengal on the UpperMahanandaWater Scheme.
Extension of Nuapada-Gunupur-Therubali Rail Link Project in northern districts of Odisha, Determination of Pension liability between Bihar and Jharkhand.
Use of State Government land by Coal companies of GOI, Pradhan MantriAwasYojana (PMAY) – land transfer by CPSU, Speedy investigation of cases of sexual offense/rape against women and children.
Prevention of cattle smuggling/illegal transportation of cattle to the Indo-Bangladesh Border, Lack of telecom and bank connectivity in Odisha, Illegal cultivation and trading of hemp/cannabis in the State of Odisha, Revision of royalty on Coal, Inadequate funding and delayed Land related issues of Petroleum projects, etc. Out of the 48 items discussed today, 40 were resolved in the meeting.
As per the vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Home Minister(Amit Shah pledges to fast-track eastern zone development) stated that the Eastern region needs more focus to fast track its development.
He hoped that today’s meeting would be decisive and fruitful in resolving the issues listed on the agenda.
He stated that besides the issues listed on the agenda, he would also like to add and discuss issues relating to law & order and administrative reforms so that this Council meeting is helpful in giving further pace to the development of the country.
The Home Minister(Amit Shah pledges to fast-track eastern zone development) also exhorted various Central Government departments to expedite decisions that are pending with the Central Ministries.
He also laid stress on expanding banking services to ensure that the benefits are available even in the remotest areas.
While concluding, he mentioned that the long pending issues need to be resolved by regular discussions and not only during the Zonal Council meetings.
He(Amit Shah pledges to fast-track eastern zone development) also requested the States to ensure the sharing of data on a regular basis. The meeting concluded in the true spirit of cooperative federalism as envisioned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar were key participants at the meeting.
At the Council meeting, Naveen reiterated the demand for revision in coal royalty and demanded a special infrastructure package for the eastern region.
He bemoaned that in all key parameters such as teledensity, road & rail density which were the prerogative of the Central government, the eastern states were laggards despite contributing handsomely to revenues.