Prime Minister Narendra Modi today accused the previous UPA regime of neglecting the North East and said his government has given priority to the region with ministers and senior officials regularly visiting it. Modi was addressing a public rally at the Indira Gandhi Park here after laying the foundation stone for the Tomo Riba Institute of Health and Medical Science. He announced the weekly called Arunachakly Naharlagun-New Delhi Express will run twice a week now and will be called Arunachal Pradesh Express. Seeking to highlight the significance of the region, he said important meetings should not only be held in the national capital but “we must go to all states. And that is why I came to Shillong for a Northeastern Council meeting. An important meeting related to agriculture was held in Sikkim.” Without naming Manmohan Singh, Modi said, the former prime minister could not visit the state on the pretext of workload, “But I am such a PM who cannot stay without meeting you all.” It was Modi’s second visit to Arunachal Pradesh in a span of three years. He last visited the state in 2015. The prime minister hailed the patriotic nature of the people of Arunachal, saying they greet each other with ‘Jai Hind’. He also complimented the state Chief Minister Pema Khandu for the “wonderful work he is doing”.
“He has prepared a top quality roadmap on how Arunachal Pradesh should be in 2027. And, he did not only ask officials for inputs but also people from all walks of life,” Modi said. The prime minister dedicated the state civil secretariat building to the people, laid the foundation stone for the Academic Block of the Tomo Riba Institute of Health and Medical Science and inaugurated the Dorjee Khandu state convention centre. “My visit to Arunachal Pradesh is related to three key projects in the state. The secretariat is already functional and this was a good step taken by the state government,” he said. The prime minister said he would personally tell people to go to Arunachal Pradesh to hold important meetings at the convention centre. “This is more than a building, it is a vibrant centre that will further the aspirations of Arunachal Pradesh. There will be conferences and cultural activities that will draw government officials and private companies,” he said. Modi said he has directed the state government not to wait for inauguration of any project but start utilising it after its completion.