The Opposition is not willing to digest changes in Northeast


The Opposition is not willing to digest changes in Northeast

In 2015, at an event to make the start of the birth
centenary celebrations of Rani Gaidinliu, the legendary freedom fighter of
Nagaland, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said that India will develop only if
the north-east develops, and added that infrastructure development in the
north-east region is being given top priority by the government. To make Assam
and Northeast the hub of cultural and business relations with other East Asian
countries, Modi recently launched the Mahabahu-Brahmaputra project in
Assam. The PM also laid the foundation stone of Dhubri-Phulbari Bridge and
performed Bhoomi Poojan for construction of Majuli Bridge during the function.

Addressing the gathering virtually, the Prime minister said
that it is the historic day for the people of Majuli as well as for the Northeast. 
He said that connectivity was a big challenge for the region, but rapid
progress has been made in this direction of late. Modi said that the long-awaited
demand is being fulfilled for the people of Majuli with the construction of the

The Prime Minister further said that the Dhubri-Phulbari Bridge
would help several northeastern states. He said that the growth and progress in
Northeast got momentum during the rule of former Prime Minister Atal Behari
Vajpayee ji and the present government has given further momentum to it. He
said that water ways would play an important role in connecting the region with
Southeast Asian countries. He added that today’s project would give a boost to
the tourism sector in Assam.

On the other hand, Union Minister for Road Transport and
Highways Nitin Gadkari said that Rs one lakh crore project will be started in
Assam in coming days. He said that due to the introduction of new technology
projects the cost of the Jorhat-Majuli Bridge could be reduced. Mr. Gadkari
said that construction of Jorhat-Majuli and Dhubri-Phulbari bridges would give
a major boost in the connectivity for Assam and Meghalaya.

Ever since Modi became the Prime Minister, he has been
pushing for development of the Northeast that was long overdue. Indias Act
East Policy is bearing fruit and has been immensely praised by the people of
the Northeast. Roads, bridges and airports have connected the states of the
Northeast to the rest of the country like never before.

For the record, Assam sends 14 MPs to Parliament; Arunachal
Pradesh, Meghalaya, Tripura and Manipur send two MPs each; Sikkim, Nagaland and
Mizoram have one seat each in the Lok Sabha.

But how did the BJP come to this point where it now rules
four out of eight northeastern states, is in a coalition in two, and alliance
partners via NDA in two others? Before one understands this change of fortunes
for the BJP, sample this: there was not even one BJP-led government in the
northeastern region till 2016.

Lastly, BJP once struggled in Assam, Tripura, Arunachal
Pradesh and Manipur, but has now comfortably wrested power from the earlier
governments in these states. In Meghalaya and Nagaland, the BJP is part of the
government through an alliance with National Peoples Party (NPP) and the
National Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP), respectively. In Mizoram and
Sikkim, while the BJP is not part of the ruling governments, the ruling parties
are part of the NEDA that supports the NDA at the Centre.

However, what’s strange is that the Opposition is not
willing to accept the changes in ground in terms of political situation and



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