Centre to ease norms for visiting parts of NE

  • PTI, Guwahati
  • Updated: Oct 17, 2014 15:58 IST

The Centre has decided to relax norms for 'Protected Area Permit' required for foreigners to visit parts of North East along with some other places in a few bordering states to promote tourism, Union minister of state for home Kiren Rijiju said on Friday.

"We have decided to relax the norms of Protected Area Permit. I have discussed it with my senior ministers," he said at the Infrastructure Conclave by industry chamber PHDCCI in Guwahati.

The minister said the issue has already been taken up with the Foreign Affairs Department of his ministry for the same.

"Relaxation of visa, permission to travel from one place to another in North East and any other issues, you will get all support from us to promote tourism in the region," Rijiju told industry people.

However, the relaxation will not be a blanket one for the entire region.

"It (easing of norms) will not be a blanket relaxation for the entire region. It will be pocket-wise," the minister said.

On development of the region, Rijiju said the North Eastern states have to proceed with a positive attitude.

"Most of NE complaints are about neglect, isolation and lack of connectivity... Don't look at the things from a negative perspective. If you are not capable enough to solve your problem, Delhi alone cannot do anything," he said.

He also blamed frequent bandhs and blockades for lack of development of the region.

"North East has the highest numbers of insurgents, student groups and autonomous state demands in the world. Demanding is not their problem, its their right. We have to admit that we have faltered. Governments in the region have to realise that they have failed," Rijiju said.

A serious issue is that half of the memorandums home ministry receives from NE are about status of different communities and so all the developmental works will lead to nowhere in the region, he added.

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