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U’khand CM demands separate ministry for Himalayan states

Chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat on Sunday reiterated his demand that the central government constitute a separate ministry for the Himalayan states and said the closure of hydro-power projects approved for Uttarakhand is not in the latter’s interests

dehradun Updated: Jun 17, 2018 21:53 IST
Hindustan Times, Dehradun
Chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat also urged the Centre for financial and technical help in relocating villages which are vulnerable to natural disasters.(HT Photo)

Chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat on Sunday reiterated his demand that the central government constitute a separate ministry for the Himalayan states and said the closure of hydro-power projects approved for Uttarakhand is not in the latter’s interests.

“Hydro power is a clean energy and can play an important role in the development of the state. Closure of such duly approved projects is therefore not in its interest,” he said while speaking at the fourth meeting of Niti Ayog chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Rawat also reiterated his demand that the central government constitute a separate ministry for the Himalayan states.

“If that is not possible a ‘Hills cell’ should be constituted under the aegis of the Niti Ayog,” he said.

Rawat said the states contributing for conservation of environment should be encouraged and for that green accounting system should be adopted.

Referring to Uttarakhand, he urged the Centre for financial and technical help in relocating villages which are vulnerable to natural disasters.

Rawat said his government has been working on a mission mode on 25 important targets to achieve the goal of New India by 2020.

“Special focus is on doubling the farmers’ income, checking distress migration from hilly areas and Digital Uttarakhand.

“A landholding in the state is currently estimated to have an average agricultural income of ₹65,000, which has to be increased up to ₹1.5 lakh by 2022,” he said.

A total of 16 mandis (wholesale markets) in plain districts in the state have so far been linked to the e-national agricultural market, Rawat said, adding that the hill mandis were also being linked to the online system.

“In order to rejuvenate the rivers and ensure flow of water in them all the time, under the water conservation campaign, water reservoirs, water tank trenches and check dams are being built,” he said.

“A large scale plantation campaign with public participation in the water storage area of the Kosi and Rispana rivers is proposed in the month of July.”

First Published: Jun 17, 2018 21:53 IST