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North-east must have permanent peace: PM
Amitabha Roy Chowdhury in Lohitpur (Arunachal Pradesh) | February 01, 2008 14:16 IST
Last Updated: February 01, 2008 14:55 IST
Concerned over the problems of militancy and insurgency in the north-east, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [Images] on Friday said it was imperative to have lasting peace in the region.
"It is imperative that permanent peace is established in the north-east," he said addressing army and Indo-Tibetan Border Police jawans in Lohitpur and those who came from the far flung Kibithu area for barakhana (lunch) with the prime minister.
While Kibithu is on the China border, Lohitpur is on the boundary with Myanmar.
Seeking to boost the morale of jawans braving hostile weather conditions in inhospitable terrain, Dr Singh said apart from guarding the borders, they were fighting terrorism and insurgency.
"This is a challenging task," he said.
Referring to the transit problems faced by jawans, Dr Singh announced a grant of Rs 60 lakh to upgrade the transit facilities at Dehan, Senge, Likabali and Missamari.
He also announced a grant of Rs.30 lakh for setting up satellite telephony at Subansiri, Siang, Seam, Lohit and Debang valleys to improve telecommunication with the rest of the country.
The prime minister said he had instructed senior officials to bring to his notice whatever more was needed to address the problems faced by the personnel.
"I will see that the requirements are met," he said.
"As the sentinels of the nation, you should get all facilities as a matter of right," he added.
The prime minister said he was proud to say that the nation was prepared to face any challenge because of the brave jawans. "To ensure peace, it is very important that the nation is strong," he said.
Dr Singh lauded the security forces for their great service in fighting terrorism in the region and added that people had great faith in them for facing challenges boldly.
"I believe your sacrifice and selfless service has enabled the government to face security related challenges and to create an appropriate atmosphere for development," he said.
The prime minister spoke of the valour and bravery of the jawans posted in remote areas to safeguard the nation.
"I salute the jawans who have made great sacrifices," he said.
Citing the tremendous progress made by the country in the field of science and technology and referring to the strong economy, he said the standard of living of the people has improved.
"These have added to the strength of the forces too and they can face new challenges more effectively," the PM said.
"Today our force occupies an important place in the world. Our armed forces have used new technology to make them more strong," he said adding, their sense of dedication and sacrifice has helped the country emerge from difficult times.
The prime minister said he was confident that the jawans would face new challenges with full preparation.
Dr Singh told the jawans they were lucky that the first rays of the rising sun touched this part of the country.
"It is a matter of great pride for me that I am standing on the north-eastern corner of our great country," he said.
Arunachal Pradesh Governor Gen (Retd) J J Singh, Chief Minister Dorjee Khandu and Army Chief Gen Deepak Kapoor were present at the barakhana.