President quotes Ambikagiri Roychoudhury

Spl Correspondent

NEW DELHI, Jan 29: Stating that the NDA government was fully committed to overall and balanced development, President Ram Nath Kovind on Friday said that the Centre’s policy for bringing enduring peace to the North East, based on sensitivity and collaboration, has started showing clear results now.

Addressing the joint session of Parliament marking the beginning of the Budget Session, the President said that a policy for rapid development of the North East, while preserving its unique geographical, cultural and linguistic characteristics and its social identity, is being implemented.

The President at the outset quoted a poem by ‘Assam Kesari’ Ambikagiri Roychoudhury. He said that whenever India has remained united, it has been able to attain even seemingly unattainable goals. This solidarity and Mahatma Gandhi’s inspiration had given us freedom from hundreds of years of colonial rule. “Echoing the same spirit, Assam Kesari Ambikagiri Roychoudhury, the nationalist poet, had said, ‘Om tatsat Bharat mahat, ek chetonaat, ek dhyanot, ek sadhonaat, ek avegot, ek hoi jaa, ek hoi jaa’ (India’s grandeur is the ultimate truth. In one single consciousness, one thought, one devotion, one inspiration, let us unite, let us unite),” Kovind said.

Kovind said that today, extremism in the North East was on the wane and there was a sharp decline in the number of violent incidents. The youths who went astray on the path of violence are now returning to the mainstream of development and nation building.

“For Assam and the Northeastern states, the Brahmaputra river is the ‘Jibondhara’ (lifeline),” he said.

“Making this lifeline the basis for economic activity, work on operationalizing several national waterways is in progress. This will benefit all sections of people in the North East, including farmers, youth and entrepreneurs,” he said.

By developing the Integrated National Waterways under the Artha Brahmaputra programme, efforts are under way to transform the Brahmaputra and Barak rivers as streams of development.

He said that rehabilitation of Bru refugees is being completed in a peaceful and harmonious manner. Similarly, a historic Bodo peace accord has been signed which has also been implemented successfully. After the accord, elections to the Bodo Territorial Council have been held successfully.