Thursday, May 23, 2019 10:12 PM

'Niti Forum for North-East' to accelerate region's inclusive growth

Agartala, April 9 (IANS) The first meeting of the 'Niti Forum for North-East' (NFNE) will be held here on Tuesday to accelerate inclusive and sustainable economic growth in the region, an official said here on Monday.

The newly constituted forum will be co-chaired by the Vice-Chairman of NITI Aayog Rajiv Kumar and Minister of State for Ministry of Development of Northeastern Region (DoNER) Jitendra Singh.

"The NFNE would identify various constraints on the way of accelerated, inclusive and sustainable economic growth in northeast India and to recommend suitable interventions for addressing identified constraints.A It would also review the development status of the region comprising eight states including Sikkim," the official of the Tripura's planning department said.

Chief Ministers or Deputy Chief Ministers or Planning and Coordination Ministers of Tripura, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim and top officials of all the eight northeastern states and various central ministries were likely to attend Tuesday's day-long meeting.

The official said that the forum, constituted last month following the direction of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, might examine and address any other issues which are of importance but not specifically dealt with.

"The NFNE may devise its own procedure to conduct its task and fields visits or constitution of sub-groups," he added.

DoNER minister Jitendra Singh had recently said in Guwahati that the 90-year-old "Indian Forest Act of 1927", which was a legacy of the British Raj, was amended through a decision of the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Modi.

The NFNE is the third body after North Eastern Council (NEC) and DoNER Ministry for the all-round growth of the northeastern region, comprising 45.58 million people, which is 4 per cent of the country's population.

Former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi constituted the NEC (under the NEC Act 1971) in November 1972 while Atal Bihari Vajpayee set up the DoNER Department in 2001 and accorded it the status of a full-fledged ministry in 2004.


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China says won't interfere in Nirav Modi's arrest

By Gaurav Sharma
Beijing, April 9 (IANS) China on Monday hinted it won't push for fugitive Indian jeweller Nirav Modi's arrest, who is suspected to be in Hong Kong, saying the Chinese autonomous region has its own set of judicial rules and India can deal with the authorities directly.

India has reportedly asked Hong Kong to arrest the main accused in the $2billion fraud bank fraud who is believed to be in Chinese territory, a former British colony which enjoys a high degree of autonomy.

"According to the one country two system and basic laws of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) and the assistance and authorization of the central government, the Hong Kong SAR can make a proper arrangement on judicial mutual assistance with other countries," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said.

"If India has made a relevant request to the Hong Kong SAR (Special Administrative Region), we leave the matter to the Hong Kong SAR and hope that it will follow the basic laws and relevant judicial system agreement with India to deal with the relevant issue," Geng said.

Hong Kong has its own independent system where China has its say only in defence and external affairs. While India has an extradition treaty with Hong Kong, there is no such agreement with China.

Modi, a regular on the lists of rich and famous Indians since 2013, along with his group companies -- Diamond R US, Stellar Diamond and Solar Exports, and an uncle and business partner and others have been named in the huge scam, admitted by the PNB in February and leading to a massive upheaval in the country's banking system.

Modi owned a chain of boutiques in Hong Kong.



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