SHILLONG, Mar 18: Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma led a delegation of cabinet ministers and called on Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley at his residence in New Delhi Saturday evening to discuss on the financial situation of the State.
Jaitley gave a patient hearing to the Chief Minister and other cabinet ministers and assured all support and cooperation to increase revenue generation in the State.
The Union Minister expressed concern on the deficit states of North East and said that the Centre will extend full support to reverse the situation in the region.
“We have to come up with inadequacies of resources of the deficit state. If we tell North East to live on its own resources it will take one day for the region to break, so it our responsibility to support and give a special attention to the region”, said Jaitley during the interaction with the ministers.
He expressed hope that Assam was slowly coming out of the deficit status.
Jaitley has suggested the delegation to come up with appropriate strategies to promote tourism in Meghalaya with focus on making Meghalaya an educational hub.
The Chief Minister also discussed about setting of an IT and food Park in Meghalaya apart from promoting the indigenous herbal medicines of the region. Jaitley said that centre would extend all cooperation to Meghalaya to enhance revenue generation. He also suggested that the Government should collaborate with private investors to boost trade, business and economy in the State.
The upcoming National Games 2022 was also elaborately discussed during the meeting, which lasted for about 30 minute.
During the meeting, the delegation mooted a number of initiatives including marketing and branding Meghalaya as a tourist destination and package Christmas and New Year for rest of India and globally.
The need for generating national curiosity for Meghalaya has to be taken up, so that people can visit Meghalaya, Jaitley suggested the delegation.
The issue of air connectivity in Meghalaya was also discussed during the meeting.
“At present we have a Pawan Hans helicopter. But we are going to open three helipads in various parts of the state to ensure these services start. Railway tracks are also on the list but there are challenges as NGO and civil societies are posing some challenge but we are trying to get them onboard”, said the Chief Minister.
“Once you have railways highway and airport you will actually attract tourists from all over the areas. You have the capacity to convert the region into a goldmine. So in your tenure is this is the principle focus and you use your resources for your purpose”, the Union Minister said to the delegation.