NEW DELHI, May 29 � In a fresh attempt to reach out to the people of the North East, the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) has decided to launch a web page exclusively for the region to get feedback directly from the people, newly appointed Minister, General (retd) VK Singh declared here today.
�My first thought in taking over the Ministry of DoNER is that there is a tremendous amount that has to be done for our North East and I would like to assure the country and the people of the region that I am here to implement what the BJP manifesto says and to give due importance to the people of North East,� he said while assuming charge of his Ministry at the Vigyan Bhavan Annexe.
�I want the people of the region not to feel alienated and instead feel a part of this country,� he said. �I want to inform that to connect with North East, we will launch a separate web page, so that people can give their suggestions and mention their problems. And I am ready to meet anybody who wish to meet me. For that I will travel to the North East. We are working on it and in the next week, the web page would be ready and operational,� he informed.
The retired Army General, however, kept off controversial issue and did not take any question on security issues, including border disputes with China, stating that they do not fall under the charter of DoNER Ministry.
�� cannot reply to any questions on security issues because the charter of the ministry does not include security. Its charter is development and how to link the North East with the rest of the country and create an atmosphere, which would help in maintaining overall security,� he explained.
When asked for his views on the controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), the former Army Chief declined to comment. �Today I am speaking as MoS DoNER. AFSPA is a not a charter of this ministry,� he said.
Replying to questions about delay in execution of projects in the region, he admitted that there are a number of projects which are pending for the last 25 years. �My priority is to give due impetus and get these projects implemented within a timeframe,� Singh said.
About corruption in the region, the General said, �I have spent the whole of yesterday reading reports. I have understood what is to be done and what is not to be done. I wish to assure that the system will remain clean.�
Referring to the incidents of assault on people of North East in the National Capital, he said that he would give suggestions to the persons who deal with the matter. �It is my primary concern. I will reach out to the people. I can assure you that you will see a difference,� he said.