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India looks for more land ports to exploit potential: Rijiju

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: December 13, 2017  | 22:58 IST

New Delhi, Dec 13 (PTI) India is looking to set up few more land ports after the success of such integrated check posts at Agartala and other places, Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju said today.

"We are thinking of identifying few more (land ports). Beyond that we have border huts, custom stations and there are many things," Rijiju said addressing a function here today to celebrate 50 years of ASEAN and 25 years of India-ASEAN Partnership.

He talked about the success and brisk business being done at land ports at Agartala and other places in the country saying that it is not easy to set up a land port because you have to have an outlet.

Elaborating further, he said, "These borders along the Eastern coast and Northeast must be hugely explored ... otherwise people think they are far away from Delhi."

"The heart of the country may be Delhi. But shape and size of country is defined by its border. The country does not begin with the capital but it begins from the border. So borders are important."

He also said that the obsession with the western education and issues with Pakistan must be done away with.

The minister said that Home Ministry has started opening various channels on the borders to foster relations with neighbours, particularly in Eastern and North-Eastern Region (NER).

The Land Ports Authority of India has taken up expansion of the Integrated Check Post (ICP) at Moreh in Manipur for expansion of trade with Myanmar, Indias gateway to the ASEAN, and it will be inaugurated soon.

He said the ICP in Agartala on Bangladesh border has started and few more ICPs besides Land Customs Stations and Border Haats will be set up.

Echoing the views, Telecom and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that under the Northeast BPO (business processing outsourcing) scheme, the BPOs have already started working in Guwahati, Jorhat, Kohima and Imphal.

Elaborating further, he said that in the latest bid the BPOs are going to come in Dipu, Kokrajhar and Silchar in Assam; Dimpapur in Nagaland and Agratala in Tripura.

He also told that Bhubaneswar, Cuttak and Baleshwar in Odisha have become the new centres of BPOs.

"The most moving moment for me was... Kashmir... today BPOs are working in Bhadarwah, Budgam, Jammu, Sopore and Srinagar."

He said, "The latest BPOs have come out in Chittor, Mathura, Deoria, Farukabad, Jahanabad, Gaya, Pathankot, Gwalior and Amritsar. It is new India emerging."

Rijiju also said East India and the NER (northeast region) are rich in mineral and natural resources.

He said many of us will be surprised to learn that Dibrugarh contributed more to government?s revenues than India?s commercial capital, Mumbai.

Myanmar has the third highest Indian diaspora, next only to Nepal and the US, he added.

Rijiju said East Asia and South East Asia stretching from Japan and China and upto India is emerging as the world?s next economic powerhouse.

India cannot be delineated from South East Asia and East Asia, he added. PTI KKS MR

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