New Delhi: Pressing for a special policy
for Himalayan states, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Ramesh
Pokhriyal `Nishank` on Tuesday demanded setting up of a separate
ministry at the Centre to help in the development of border
Participating in the meeting of state chief ministers
on internal security here, he said keeping in mind the
strategic location of Himalayan states and their role in
preserving the ecology, it was essential that a special policy
be formulated to deal with the difficulties faced by them.
He said the Centre should set up a separate ministry
so that basic developmental issues of the border states could
be taken care of.
The Uttarakhand Chief Minister said though his state
shares international borders with China and Nepal, only nine
development blocks in five border districts got the benefit of
Border Area Development Programme (BADP).
Demanding lowering of standards in enabling a district
to get benefits under the BADP, he said all the development
blocks of the state in the bordering districts should be
He said taking the example of China, which is building
a massive road network in Tibet, India should also improve
road and communication infrastructure in Uttarakhand.
The chief minister also stressed on the need for
fresh marking of pillars on the Indo-Nepal border which have
been damaged over the years.
He said it was essential for the Centre to work on
a scheme to make it mandatory for people crossing over to
India from Nepal to carry identity cards.
He said on the lines of the north-eastern states,
Uttarakhand should also get 100 per cent central funding for