Sonowal calls for development of all 33 Assam districts

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Guwahati, September 20: Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal Thursday called for development of all the 33 districts as per the resources available in each of them to achieve holistic development of the state.
Chairing a meeting of the State Innovation and Transformation Aayog (SITA) here, Sonowal said after demonetization there was an increased need for bank branches in remote areas to transfer government scheme benefits to the beneficiaries.
He also said that the state government entities like Assam State Cooperative Agriculture and Rural Development (ASCARD) Bank must be revived after thoroughly considering its feasibility and outstanding liabilities.
We must develop all the 33 districts of the state as per the resources available in each of those districts. When we focus on the available resources of the respective districts for preparing the budget and roadmap for development then only we can achieve holistic development of Assam”, said the CM.
“In this regard, SITA can help us by studying the resource status of the districts, the Chief Minister added.
During the meeting, discussions regarding the proposal submitted by SITAs expert committee for revival of ASCARD bank also came up.
Digital India initiative of Prime Minister Narendra Modi must be implemented to bring in transparency and efficiency in cooperative banking systems and empowering the weaker section of the society, he said.
Reviewing the proposal of SITA to conduct study on Tocklai Tea Research Institute in upper Assam, the chief minister said the research centre must aspire to become one of the best in the world providing cutting edge solutions to the tea industry for increased production and quality maintenance.
He further said the tea sector must also incorporate best practices from around the world from tea producing countries such as Sri Lanka, Kenya, etc., and incorporate those practices to break into newer markets for Assam tea and reclaim the glory of the tea industry here.
The chief minister also directed SITA to find ways to popularise cultivation and consumption of local seasonal fruit varieties for their high nutrient contents.
Referring to Prime Ministers vision to develop Northeast as an organic hub, Sonowal urged SITA to conduct study to develop the organic agricultural fields in the state.
The proposals of conducting study on muga rearing, producing renewable energy and utilising bioengineering technologies to tackle river bank erosion were discussed among others.
Water Resource Minister Keshab Mahanta, Vice Chairman of SITA Dipok Kumar Borthakur, Chief Secretary Alok Kumar, Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister Sanjay Lohia among others were present in the meeting. (PTI)