Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Northeast states observe Republic Day with patriotic fervour


Along with the rest of the country, the eight sisters states of the Northeast observed with patriotic fervour. State-level celebrations were held in the capitals while the day was also observed at the district level.
Assam: Describing ULFA (I) as the last mile in Assam’s path to peace, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Thursday urged members of the outfit to return to the mainstream and be a part of the development process.
Once it comes for talks, Assam will transform into an “island of peace”, he said.
Speaking at an event to celebrate the 74th Republic Day, Sarma said, “In the state’s path to peace, ULFA (I) is the last target left. It is not the same Assam as it was when the ULFA was formed. Today, the state is fast moving on the path of development. The government is working on poverty alleviation.”
“There has been a change in the mindset of people and this change should reflect in the ULFA (I), too. I appeal to them to return and work together for laying the foundation of a progressive Assam,” he said.
Sarma said he is not questioning anyone’s patriotism, but the new generation has the right to grow up in a peaceful environment.
While protecting the identity of the people is essential, Assam must also be able to grow at the same time, he maintained.
The chief minister also mentioned about the peace accords with Bodo, Karbi and Adivasi groups in the last few years, which has ensured “return of peace to the state”.
Referring to implementation of clauses of the Bodo peace accord, Sarma announced that villages with 80 per cent or more of its inhabitants in Dhekiajuli, Sootea, Gohpur and neighbouring areas will be brought under the Bodoland Territorial Region.
The hardliner faction ULFA (Independent), led by its ‘commander-in-chief’ Paresh Barua, has so far remained outside the peace parleys.
The outfit had called for boycott and a general strike against Republic Day celebrations, as it has done earlier as well.
Sarma also asserted that his government was working towards an all-round and inclusive growth of the state, while also making special efforts to place it prominently on the global map by highlighting the rich culture and heritage.
“We have been working relentlessly for development of our state in all sectors, be it social, cultural or economic,” the CM said.
To present the state’s rich culture before the world, a massive event is being planned on April 14, marking the Assamese new year, “when 10,000-15,000 ‘dhulias’ (drum players) and ‘nasonis’ (dancers) will assemble for a Bihu performance, aiming to enter the Guinness Book of World Records”, he said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to attend the event.
Sarma also announced a Rs 300-crore project for the Kamakhya Temple to develop it into a top religious tourism destination.
Manipur: India’s 74th Republic Day was celebrated in Manipur on Thursday amid separate total shutdown strikes given by the rebel groups resorting to armed struggle to regain sovereignty of the erstwhile Kingdom.
The celebrations held amid tight security arrangements were peaceful as no untoward incident was reported from any part of the state.
The state level Republic Day celebration was held in Imphal’s Kangla fort with state Governor La Ganesan unfurling the national flag and receiving salutes from 76 different march-past contingents.
The celebration began with the Governor inspecting a guard of honour accorded by a contingent of 6th Battalion Manipur Rifles (MR) commanded by Additional Superintendent of Police (Central Motor Transport Workshop) T Bishwajit Singh.
Later, the Governor unfurled the national flag amidst national anthem played by a band of 1st Battalion Manipur Rifles.
He also decorated officers and personnel of state police, Manipur Central Jail and Manipur Fire Service department with the President’s Police Medal for Distinguished Service, Police Medal for Gallantry on the occasion of Independence Day, 2021, Police Medal for Meritorious Service on the occasion of Independence Day, 2021, Union Home Minister’s Medal for Excellence in Police Training, 2020-2021, President Correctional Service Medal for Distinguished Service, President Correctional Service Medals for Meritorious Service and Fire Service Medal for Meritorious Service.
He further took salute from 76 march-past contingents, including different band contingents, led by Commandant of 2nd Battalion Manipur Rifles Victoria Yengkhom.
20 different cultural troupes and tableaux of 14 different departments of the state government also took part in marching contingents following the march-past.
Delivering the vote of thanks after the parade, chief minister N Biren Singh highlighted the seriousness of the state government on its war on drugs campaign.
He informed that the five personnel of the state police arrested recently with a huge consignment of illegal drugs were terminated as an exemplary punishment with immediate effect.
Singh, then warned that there will be no compromise against anyone found involved in illegal drugs and poppy plantations.
The chief minister wished the people of the state on the occasion and further thanked everyone participating, including students, civil police, security forces, ex-servicemen, people from different communities, civil societies, etc. in the successful celebration of the occasion.
He recounted his memories of participating in the Republic Day march past parade during his college days and said “It is under the Indian Constitution that the citizens of the country enjoy their rights and responsibilities.”
Stating that India has assumed the presidency of the G-20, he said that Manipur will also be hosting meetings as part of the presidency as in other parts of the country. The chief minister further urged support from the people for the successful hosting of the meetings.
While boycotting the day, the rebel groups also imposed separate total shutdowns which ended at 6pm.(Correspondent)
Arunachal: Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Thursday exhorted the people of the state to join hands with the government in its crusade against the drug menace.
He appealed to the leaders of various communities to take part in programmes launched by his government for prevention of substance abuse, especially by the youth.
“We are committed to achieving ‘Drug free Arunachal’ through various means, but all of these measures will require multi-sectoral coordination among departments, and more importantly cooperation from the society,” the chief minister said after unfurling the Tricolour at I G Park here on the occasion of the country’s 74th Republic Day.
A colourful parade displaying military might was followed by cultural performances at the programme.
Khandu, on the occasion, also awarded three gold medals, seven silver and 16 commendation certificates to persons in various fields for the meritorious work.
The CM said that a special ‘anti-narcotics task force’ has been formed and a ‘narcotic helpline’ instituted to generate information about the menace and break the supply chain.
“I appeal to the people to help this endeavour by generating intelligence for targeted action,” he said.
Citing the success story of Medo village in Lohit district, where pumpkin cultivation has replaced illegal poppy seed farming, the chief minister urged people to intensify the war against opium.
He advised them to take up alternative cash crop farming like ginger, mustard and tea.
Talking about the development initiatives in the state, Khandu said that his government has successfully completed 365 projects in various sectors at an investment of Rs 11,399.49 crore, as promised last year.
Khandu expressed his gratitude to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for sanctioning various projects in the state, including the strategic Arunachal Frontier Highway, benefitting its population.
“In seventy years since Independence, only 20,000 kilometers of roads were built in the state, with an average of 280 km per year, but in the past seven years alone, 12,000 km more have been added,” Khandu noted.
“I am also happy to announce that the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has approved an additional 2,574 km of highways for the state worth Rs 44,000 crore,” he stated.
Sikkim: The country’s 74th Republic Day was on Thursday celebrated with fervour in Sikkim.
A state level function was held at Kamzor stadium where the the Sikkim Governor Governor Ganga Prasad unfurled the national tricolour and took a guard of honours from the state police personnel.
The Sikkim Chief Minister Prem Singh Tamang, his ministers and senior officials were present on the occasion.
Earlier, the Governor, in his message to the people of Sikkim, said that the Himalayan state was progressing well on various parameters of development for which it has been awarded numerous national awards in the field of tourism, health, education, rural development, environmental management, etc.
“My government has achieved all these feats by consistently adhering to the national perspective and the policy directives of the Government of India. Our approach is to develop a comprehensive developmental strategy designed to achieve the national objectives, paired with our own specific developmental needs aim,” Prasad said.
Sikkim has done better than the nation’s average in some health indicators with the Infant mortality rate in the state coming down to five per 1000 live births as compared to 28 per 1000 live births in the country, he said, adding that the crude death rate in Sikkim stood at 4.1 against 6 in the country.
Mizoram: People of Mizoram joined the nation in celebrating the 74th Republic Day with patriotic fervour. The celebrations began early morning with the unfurling of the National Flag at government, semi-government offices and residential and commercial premises across the state, reports AIR news.
The main program was held in the morning at Assam Rifles ground in Aizawl. In the program, Governor Hari Babu Kambhampati unfurled the National Flag, along with playing drums by the armed forces and singing the National Anthem by all participants. Contingents of para-military forces and police personnel joined the March Past and parade.
On the occasion, the Governor paid rich tributes to the freedom fighters and extended greetings to all people of the state. Addressing the people, he said his Government has marched on in the implementation of the Socio Economic Development Policy. He pointed out various initiatives of his government in implementing flagship schemes towards inclusive development of the people of the state.
The Governor said the government continues its focus on Rural Development programmes. Under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, more than 2 lakh households received Job Cards. The Ministry of Rural Development has released 323 crore rupees under the scheme. Also, under Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, various initiatives under MGNREGA are being conducted.
Referring to the beginning of Amrit Kaal, the Governor said efforts have been taken to achieve inclusive development, climate action, energy transition, productivity enhancement & investment.
Tripura: In Tripura, 74th Republic Day is being celebrated across the state with patriotic fervor. Celebrations began with the unfurling of the National Flag at residential houses, government and semi-government offices, business complexes, and street corners, reports AIR news.
The state-level main program was organized at Assam Rifles ground in Agartala where Governor Satyadeo Narain Arya unfurled the tricolour and took salute of the impressive march past. Conveying greetings to the people, he paid tributes to the heroes of India’s freedom struggle who sacrificed their lives for Independence. Contingents of Para Military forces, Tripura Police, TSR, women police, and NCC participated in the Republic Day parade.
Thousands of children from various schools performed cultural skits of patriotic genre and highlighted the cultural diversity of the country by staging traditional and folk dances and acrobatics of Yoga demonstrations.
Meghalaya: Along with the rest of the country, Meghalaya celebrated the 74th Republic Day on January 26.
In the function held at Polo Grounds, Meghalaya Governor, Brig. (Dr.) B D Mishra (Retd) unfurled the National Flag and took the salute of the marching contingents comprising the CRPF, East Khasi Hills DEF, 1st MLP Battalion, SF10, Indian Reserve Battalion from Arunachal Pradesh, NCC Boys and Girls, Indian Red Cross Society, Unitarian Higher Secondary School-Puriang, JNV-Mawphlang and Brass Band of Border Wing Home Guards, reports meghalayamonitor.com.
President’s Home Guards medals
During the programme, announcement was made for the President’s Home Guards & Civil Defence Medal For Meritorious Service to Homesingh Khongjoh, Havildar (HG), Bipul Khongwir, Havildar (HG), Ambrush A. Sangma, Havildar (HG) and Pynkhambor Harris Khongsngi, Senior Staff Officer (CD).
President’s Police Medals
Announcement was also made for the President’s Police Medal for Distinguished Service to Prodenson Sangma, Havildar, 1st MLP Bn, Mawiong and Police Medal for Meritorious Service to Upendra Mothey, ABSI, 2nd MLP Bn, Goeragre,Kolan Swer, Havildar and Ram Bahadur Sonar, ABC/32, Tura.

Manipur Governor La Ganesan taking salute of Republic Day parade in Imphal on Thursday.
Mizoram Governor Hari Babu Kambhampati saluting a march past contingent.
Meghalaya Governor, Brig. (Dr.) B D Mishra (Retd) took the salute of the marching contingents.

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