Augmenting the local strengths of North East

Published By : Admin | March 14, 2019 | 14:46 IST

It is well known that Northeast has largely remained out of the direct sphere of governance due to the oft-repeated reason of ‘tyranny of distance’. However, Modi government has brought the focus of the central government and rest of the nation on the innumerable opportunities arising due to the development of the region. It has laid a solid foundation in the region to fulfill the aspiration of the people. 

The government is working on multiple fronts to bring the region at the same level of development as the rest of the country. It has been able to successful complete long-standing infrastructural projects as well fulfill demands of the people of the region in the last 5 years. 

Accelerated Pace of Infrastructural Growth 

The pace of infrastructural growth is changing the face of the northeastern region. Engineering marvels like one of the five highest airports in the country - Pakyong airport, India’s longest bridge – DholaSadiya bridge, India's largest railroad bridge - Bogibeel Bridge, have been successfully made operational for the benefit of North-East region’s economy as well deepen connectivity. 

The government has initiated the construction of a new AIIMS in Guwahati with a cost of more than Rs. 1,100 Crores, thus, bringing tertiary healthcare facilities nearby.  In order to connect the North East with a national gas grid, a gas pipeline up to Guwahati is being laid by GAIL at a cost of Rs. 3,000 Crores. 

More Power to the Northeast 

Ensuring power for every village and every household has benefited the Northeast tremendously. In the last five years, 6000 villages and around13 lakh households in the northeast have been electrified. Recently, Mizoram became the 3rd power surplus state in the Northeast Region (NER) after Sikkim and Tripura. The North-East region is now experiencing ‘Transformation by Development’. 

Boost to the Local Ts: Textiles, Trade and Tourism 

India’s Northeast is blessed with great cultural diversity, especially in terms of textiles. For the first time ever North East Investors’ Summit was held in Shillong, especially focused to promote the textile industry and allied sectors. 

Development and modernization of the textile sector in the Northeastern states will create more jobs, especially for women of that region. Each apparel and garment manufacturing centre under the North East Region Textile Scheme is employing around 1,200 people.

The region is being developed as a trade and tourism hub, with India’s ‘Act East Policy’ in focus. Access to sea via Bangladesh and Myanmar is beneficial for the economy of the landlocked northeast. The India-Myanmar-Thailand Trilateral Highway has opened the ASEAN market through seamless passenger and freight movement.

The Buddhist tourism circuit from East India begins from Bihar and traverse through many Northeastern states into the nations of Southeast Asia. Accordingly, a favorable ecosystem has been put in place. This initiative carries the potential of becoming a significant contributor in advancing tourism sector in the region.

Boost to Bamboo Farming

Bamboo is central to the rural economy of the northeast. Its classification as tree meant various restrictions to produce, transport, and sale. In order to boost the local economy, the government re-classified bamboo from ‘tree’ to ‘grass’. It has led to free movement of bamboo products, encourages bamboo plantation and boosts farmers’ income.

Strengthening the Organic Farming Sector

India’s northeast is an organic farming hub. The necessary support from the government is ensuring that it continues to become a model of sustainable agriculture for the nation and the world. The Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana has brought around 45,000 hectares of land under organic farming. Further, an organic value chain is being developed with support for a gamut of services including seeds, certification, aggregation, processing, marketing and brand building.

There is a lot of enthusiasm among the people of northeastern states with the manner in which a new northeast is being developed with the sustained efforts in various sectors. A new northeast seems is emerging that is gearing to lead India’s development journey.

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"Building Atmanirbhar Bharat Through Comprehensive Job Creation"
February 24, 2024

One of the most effective pathways of aspirational and practical self-actualization for citizens of a nation is employment generation at scale and expanse. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has been cognizant of this need and has moved the needle comprehensively so that job creation today is happening across the spectrum: in the formal and informal sectors, through direct and indirect opportunities, in conventional and unconventional fields, and via self-employment and the opening up of multiple avenues for gigs, start-ups and novel entrepreneurship.


Government Initiatives
If on the one hand, Bharat is seeing the exponential growth in the number of start-ups and a conducive environment has made it one that has the largest number of unicorns, on the other hand a record number of Mudra loans sanctioned have fuelled unprecedented women-led growth, and the Agniveer scheme that aims to recruit youth into the Armed services has seen adoption in record numbers. According to a Harvard University research, India is among the top quartile of fastest-growing countries till 2029 and is undergoing a historic transition towards becoming a more formalized and technologically advanced, digitally evolved nation.


In the three years between 2017-18 and 2020-21, total employment increased by 8.4 crore which is a manifestation of several key factors such as demonetisation, rationalisation of taxes, the introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST), digital inclusivity and digitisation of financial transactions, inclusion of skill development and vocational training in the National Education Policy, increasing the number of Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs), a fillip to the hitherto marginalized segments such as rural and tribal populace, and effective incentivization for a highly labour dominant unorganized sector. An example is how PM Street Vendor’s Atmanirbhar Nidhi (PM SVANidhi), has benefitted more than 56 lakh rehri or street vendors from June 2020 to November 2023.


Formalisation
Immense positive impact can be seen in the nation’s formal employment sector. India is the 5th largest economy in the world with 1.12 crore net additional employment created between 2015 to 2018. This is a result of the confluence of progressive, pro-industry policy decisions, leveraging of advancements in technology, reforms to ease business investment, and a focus on skilling. An example of how this translates on the ground is that with the PM MUDRA Yojana More than 15 crore people have been employed in the MSME sector out of which 3.4 crore are women.


In the IT Industry alone, around 20 lakh people have been employed between 2013-14 and 2021-22. Indirectly, about 6.24 crore jobs were created between 2014 and 2019 in India’s digital economy. When it comes to a boost in employment generation across sectors, let’s take the example of tourism – a revamped and increasingly attractive tourism and hospitality industry led to 1.9 crore indirect jobs being created in the tourism sector between 2017 and 2020. The overhaul in the hospitality sector has led to the creation of many such jobs directly, and indirectly; India is among the most visited countries in the world and has been experiencing a growing influx of tourists. This has led to business incentivization and a boost to local artisans, transport providers, and hotels and restaurants within the larger hospitality service industry. In Air transport alone, for every Rs. 100/- invested in the sector, 610 indirect jobs are generated.


Infromal Sectors
The winds of change can also be seen in the disruptive as well as informal sectors. Providing security and stability to the unconventional health and wellness, since 2014, about 5.65 lakh practitioners have been provided employment under Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, and Homoeopathy (AYUSH). The introduction of several new reforms, an increase in FDI, which have further helped in improving the ‘ease of doing business’ along with low data costs, improvised processes and ready adoption have created a thriving new ecosystem for employment – the gig and platform economy. Gig-economy jobs grew year-on-year by 13% and over 29.20 crore people have registered so far on the E-Shram portal. From 2016 to May 2022, ‘Hunar Haat’ has created employment avenues for over 10.5 lakh artisans and talented Vishwakarmas.


The continuing chain of beneficiaries in the government’s Gati shakti model include processes that act as catalysts for indirect job creation in sectors such as transport, logistics, mobility, food, consumer goods and manufacturing products. Up to 2021-22, 53,696 km of roadways were created which generated 21.8 crore man-days of employment. As mentioned before, round 6 crore people employed in unorganized sector between 2017-18 and 2019-20 have benefited from the SVANidhi Yojana – making PM Modi’s vision of Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas aur Sabka Prayas a quintessential facet of employment for all.


People-first policies such as the flagship program for equitable housing, the PM Awas has created 2.39 crore indirect jobs up to 2022. Another great example of the ripple effect of employment generation can be seen in the form of Production Linked Incentive (PLI) schemes which enable the expansion of existing industries into larger ones, while promoting the creation of new ones. As an example, 5 lakh incremental jobs have been created in the mobile manufacturing sector due to PLI. As per the Economic Survey 2023, PLI schemes are slated to create 60 lakh jobs. In addition, India’s fintech adoption rate of 87% as against the world average of 64% has enabled the creation of an ecosystem that is touching the lives and livelihoods of all – including the self-employed and small business owners.


To this end, Rozgar Melas that aim to provide 10 lakh jobs in less than two years, and that meld employment opportunities and unique talent have been a boon for the economy. Rozgar Mela is a key step towards the fulfilment of the commitment to accord the highest priority to employment generation in the country. On 12th February, 2024, PM Modi distributed more than 1 lakh appointment letters to newly inducted recruits and also lay the foundation stone of Phase I of the Integrated Complex “Karmayogi Bhavan” to promote collaboration and synergy amongst various pillars of Mission Karmayogi. “Rozgar Melas are playing a crucial role in enhancing the contribution of our Yuva Shakti in nation building”, said PM Modi. Rozgar Mela will be held at 47 locations across the country this year with recruitments taking place across central government departments and state governments/UTs supporting this initiative. These melas ascribe gainful opportunities to the youth, the Amrit Generation, and create pathways for their direct participation in national development. Similarly, under the Prime Ministers Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP), over 43.77 lakh people have got employment and the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) has led to the placement of over 24.51 lakh candidates.


As policy making becomes efficient, so do its representative tools; more than 19.9 lakh people have been placed in jobs through employment exchanges between 2017-2022. The government has incessantly been taking many measures to tackle unemployment issues and stem the unemployment rate. The Amrit generation is benefitting from a multi-pronged approach; if on the one hand, Scheme of Fund for Regeneration of Traditional Industries (SFURTI), has benefitted around 2.94 lakh from 2014-15 to December 2022, on the other hand, over 1.80 lakh new job-creators and entrepreneurs are now operating under the Stand-Up India scheme.


New India – Naya Bharat – is one that thrives on a developed mindset with the aim of making the country Atmanirbhar, and a Vishwa Mitra – one the world leans on. As an example of this commitment, in the current financial year, Khadi has achieved a historic milestone by generating over 9.54 lakh new jobs. Be it our push towards renewable energy, creating a decarbonized energy sector which ranks India is 4th globally or the reduction of unemployment rate in rural areas, (decreased from 5.3% in 2017-18 to 2.4% in 2022-23) the commitment of PM Modi’s government to decisively mitigate unemployment stays foremost.


A spurt in the employment index is predicated on employment mobility to higher productivity jobs, rising job rates in secondary and tertiary sectors, promotion of women as economic catalysts and the increased formalisation of the unorganized, informal sector. PM Modi’s government has consistently come good on all the parameters which is the reason why milestone, upon milestone, Bharat’s journey towards becoming Atmanirbhar and the world’s third largest economy, is only a matter of time.