Dr Ranjan bats from Imp-Moreh rail line
By Our Staff Reporter
IMPHAL, Feb 12: Lok Sabha MP Dr RK Ranjan proposed a railway line connecting Imphal and Moreh town during the Budget session yesterday apart from asking the Centre to assist the State in conserving the ponies.
In the Parliament during the Budget discussion hour yesterday, Dr Ranjan said Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s Budget 2021-22 amid the pandemic “contains hope for rejuvenating our National economy” and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mantra of Atmanirbhar Bharat (self-reliant India) seems to be the guiding principle of the Budget.
He said more than 13,000 kilometres of roads under Bharatmala Pariyojana and additional 11,000 kilometres of National Highway corridors have been projected with an enhanced outlay of Rs 1,18,101 lakh crore for the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. There should also be some specific yojana included in the Budget for improving connectivity in the North-East considering its typical geo-topographical situation.
Further stressing the need for improving highways and railways, he said Imphal-Jiribam Railway line be completed at an early date and a Budgetary provision be made to create a Imphal-Moreh line.
The Budget provides a National Rail Plan to create a ‘future ready’ Railway system by 2030. However, the National project, Imphal-Jiribam railway line of 110 kilometres remains incomplete for many years, he said, asking the Centre to provide a special provision to complete the project at an early date.
Above this, a budgetary provision for a railway line connecting Imphal with the border town Moreh would make the Act East Policy action oriented, he said.
Then, reminding the Centre of the request he made to Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier, Dr Ranjan stressed the need for conserving Manipur’s ponies.
Talking about the grim fate the ponies are facing, he said their number is dwindling and there are less than 500 at present. The Manipuri pony is associated with the origin of the modern polo game. For saving and conserving the exotic Manipuri ponies, a viable project is necessary. The State Government has very little resources to have a sustainable project for saving the ponies, he said, asking the Finance Minister to extend financial assistance for a durable and viable project to protect the ponies.
During the Budget session, Dr Ranjan also sought budgetary provisions for development of small inland fishing centres in and around Loktak Lake and other wetland bodies in North-East India.
Dr Ranjan also showed his support for the New Farm Laws and said the laws will revolutionise the agrarian economy and praised the Budget for proposing extension of SVAMITVA (Survey of Villages and Mapping with Improvised Technology in Village Areas) Yojana to all the States/UTs, expansion of “Operation Greens” to include 22 perishable products and provision to integrate more than 1,000 Mandis with e-NAM (National Agriculture Market).
The GDP (Gross Domestic Product) is expected to grow at a rate of 14.4 percent in the next fiscal year. Positive reforms in direct tax administration, higher spending on healthcare, defense, education, food subsidy, MGNREGA, direct benefit transfer under Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana to women, are all great initiatives and they will help India achieve its cherished goal of becoming a USD 5 Trillion economy, Dr Ranjan added.