Itanagar: Terming the 12th Five-Year Plan
as critical for the development process in the state,
Arunachal Chief Minister Jarbom Gamlin said that many of the
infrastructure and other projects that were underway would
see fruition during the next plan period.
Describing Arunachal Pradesh as a `special` state even
within the special category states, Gamlin said that poor
physical connectivity, low internal resource base, lack of
skilled manpower and a long and relatively under-developed
international border are some of the major constraints the
state is facing, which could prove to be impediments in the
its growth targets.
Gamlin was speaking at the regional consultation on
the Approach Paper for the 12th Five-Year Plan convened by the
Planning Commission in Guwahati yesterday which was chaired by
its Deputy Chairman Dr Montek Singh Ahluwalia, an official
communique said here on Tuesday.
Chief Ministers of all the northeastern states
attended the consultation.
Sharing some of the problems of the state, he said
that difficult terrain combined with a very sparsely
distributed population posed a peculiar development challenge.
"There are places which require 6 to 8 days of
foot-march to reach and where a kg of salt costs Rs 120 and a
cement bag up to Rs 4,000. As such development activities in
these areas turn out to be costly," he said.
"Our appeal to the Planning Commission is that while
considering projects for such regions, typical formulae of
cost-benefit analysis should not be applied.
“Rather, the vast intangible dividends that this kind
of an investment would bring in the long run should be the
guiding factor," he pointed out.
"In addition, the minimum population criteria now
followed results in a lot of our habitations not benefiting
under many centrally sponsored schemes.
“We would request that the guidelines for the centrally
sponsored schemes should be made region-specific and should be
framed only after extensive discussions with state governments
and after field visits," Gamlin added.
He said that the state government has envisaged a
capacity addition of 12,086 MW during the 12th plan period
through commissioning of 91 hydroelectric projects.
The entire potential is expected to be realised by the
end of the 14th plan period when the annual accruals by the
sale of state`s share of free power are expected to be in the
range of Rs 10,000 crore.
Gamlin, however, pointed that since all the power
produced would need to be evacuated to the National Grid
through the Siliguri corridor, the transmission system must be
looked into seriously.
"Since the project is too big to be undertaken by the
state government alone, it has to be taken up at the national
level," he said and expressed his hope that this would get due
attention in the approach paper.
"As transmission systems typically require three to
four years to be put in place, work on this should start
early," he added.