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Express News Service

GUWAHATI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi claimed the Northeast witnessed “unprecedented” development in the last years under the BJP-led NDA government.

“The last 8 years have seen unprecedented development in the Northeast. The focus is on infrastructure creation, ensuring better healthcare, education and popularising the rich cultures from the different states of the region,” he tweeted on Monday.

He also said that “transformative initiatives” were taken for the all-round development of the region. Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma reacted to the statement. He wrote, “In the past eight years, #NorthEast has traversed a beautiful trajectory of peace, stability and prosperity. Under the dynamic leadership of Hon PM Shri @narendramodi, we shall keep reaching new heights.”

Modi made the statement in response to a tweet of MyGovIndia – a citizen engagement platform of Government of India – which said the Centre was leaving no stone unturned for the development of the “Ashta Lakshmi” of India.

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Modi often uses the phrase Ashta Lakshmi (eight manifestations of Mahalakshmi) to refer to the eight states of the Northeast.

MyGovIndia specified the lifting of Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act from some areas of the region, peace pacts with various insurgent groups, 74% reduction in insurgency-related incidents, 60% decrease in the casualties of personnel of security forces, commissioning of 23 new air routes, country’s longest rail-cum-road bridge Bogibeel, AIIMS at Guwahati, National Sports University in Manipur and bamboo technology parks in Assam and Arunachal Pradesh, as the highlights of the Centre’s initiatives for the Northeast.

Modi’s statement comes a day after the BJP swept Assam’s Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council elections by winning all 26 seats. The victory was sweet and Modi expressed his gratitude to the people for their continuous faith in the party.

Early next year, Tripura, Nagaland and Meghalaya will go to polls and the BJP has started the groundwork. It rules Tripura and is a constituent in the coalition governments of Nagaland and Meghalaya.

In Tripura, the party has already launched a door-to-door campaign. It is led by the newly-appointed Chief Minister Manik Saha himself.

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