Cabinet approves continuation of schemes of the Ministry of DoNER worth Rs.12882.2 crore.
Union Cabinet, chaired by PM Modi on Thursday, has approved continuation of
Schemes of Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region , with an outlay of Rs. 12882.2 crore, for the balance period of the 15th Finance Commission i. e.,
2022-23 to 2025-26.
Based on the Expenditure Finance Committee (EFC) recommendations, the outlay for the North East Special Infrastructure Scheme (NESIDS), Rs.8139.5 crore has been approved, including committed liabilities of ongoing projects.
Speaking to the media, Development of North Eastern Region Minister G Kishan Reddy said that the outlay for ‘Schemes of NEC’ will be more than Rs.3202.7 crore including committed liabilities of ongoing projects.
He further informed that the outlay for Special Packages for Bodo Territorial Council (BTC), Dima Hasao Autonomous Territorial Council (DHATC) and Karbi Anglong Autonomous Territorial Council (KAATC) in Assam is Rs.1540 (BTC- Rs 500 crore, KAATC – Rs 750 crore and old packages of BTC, DHATC & KAATC – Rs 290 crore).
The NESIDS, a Central Sector Scheme with 100% Central funding, has been restructured having two components – NESIDS (Roads) and NESIDS (Other than Road Infrastructure).
The Ministry’s new scheme ‘Prime Minister’s Development initiative for the northeastern region – PM-Devine’ (with an outlay of Rs 6,600 crores), was approved in October 2022 separately, under which larger and high-impact proposals for infrastructure, social development and livelihood sectors are taken.
According to an official release, “The objectives of the schemes of the DoNER ministry is to supplement the efforts of the different central ministries and departments on one hand and the felt needs of the Northeastern states on the other, for uncovered development/welfare activities."
The schemes help provide gap-filling support to the eight North Eastern States as per their felt needs, by taking up projects – e.g., for developing infrastructure to mitigate connectivity and social sector deficits and enhancing livelihood and employment opportunities in the region.
The release further stated “Extension of the approved schemes for the balance of the 15th Finance Commission period (upto the financial year 2025-26), will enable better planning for implementation of the schemes in terms of project selection, front loading of sanction of the projects, and project implementation during the scheme period.”
“Efforts will be made to complete the maximum number of the projects by 2025-26 so that there are minimum committed liabilities beyond this year,” it added.
As a result, new sanctions for the schemes would be implemented mainly in 2022–2023 and 2023–2024, while expenses would still be incurred in 2024–2025 and 2025–2026.
The statement issued by Cabinet said, the actual expenditure in the last four years under the DoNER schemes was Rs. 7,534.46 crore, whereas the fund available for expenditure in the next four years till 2025-26 is Rs. 19,482.2 crore.
The statement said, Northeast was once known for unrest, bombings, bandhs etc but in the last eight years, peace has been established under the leadership of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and many developments took place in this period till date be it health, infrastructure, education or socio-political issues.
Among the developments for the NE states which have been announced, one such announcement is for the state of Arunachal Pradesh, in which the Prime Minister has announced a package of Rs. 550 crores to illuminate border villages of Arunachal Pradesh.