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Manmohan Singh asks insurgent groups in Assam to give up violence, start talks

Guwahati , Fri, 20 Apr 2012 ANI

Guwahati, Apr 20 (ANI): Asserting that the new wave of development in Assam has been made possible by a period of social peace and political stability, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh on Friday said violence provides no answer and that diverse groups can fulfill their aspirations only through engagement in the democratic process.

Inaugurating the Platinum Jubilee celebration of Assam Assembly here, Dr. Singh said: " There is a general realisation today that violence provides no answers and that diverse groups can fulfill their aspirations only through engagement in the democratic processes. This feeling has in no small measure resulted from the fact that the government of Assam is working for the people and for their all-round betterment."

"I am sure that the few insurgent groups that continue to remain outside the democratic process will understand the sentiments of the people of Assam and come forward to create an atmosphere that is conducive for accelerating the pace of social and economic development in this great beautiful State of our Republic. Assam's development can be the engine of growth for the entire north-eastern region as a whole," he added.

Complimenting the Assam government for taking the state to new heights of development, Dr. Singh said: In the 9th Five year Plan period the state economy of Assam grew at the rate of just 1.51 percent. This increased to about 5.7 percent during the 10th plan period. Due to the special emphasis given to development by the governments in the State and at the Centre, Assam achieved an annual average growth rate of 6.8 percent during the first four years of the 11th Five year plan."

" I am delighted to learn that in the last year of the 11th Plan Assam is expected to record a growth rate of 7.18 percent. Assam is catching up with the national average. This is good news but more needs to be done," he added.

He further said: "I would like to see Assam emerge as a new engine of growth for the North Eastern region and the country as a whole in the 12th Plan period. I am confident that in the 12th Plan Assam will be able to record a rate of growth of over 9.0 percent! I assure the people of Assam that the Central government will do whatever is possible to help Assam to achieve this goal."

"Indeed in the last about 8 years our government has been in office, we have tried our very best to extend a helping hand to the government and people of Assam. The annual plan outlay for the State has increased from Rs 3000 crore in 2005-06 to Rs 9,000 crore in 2011-2012. The total transfers to Assam for the period 2010-2015 as per the recommendations of the 13th Finance Commission would be about Rs 58,000 crore against the total of Rs 24,000 crore estimated for the period 2005-2010," he added.

Dr. Singh stated that he would visit Myanmar next month with a view to increase opportunities for trade, economic cooperation and connectivity to the larger ASEAN region.

"I will discuss with the leadership of Myanmar how we can increase opportunities for expansion of trade, economic cooperation and connectivity to the larger ASEAN region. Assam and the other states of the North East can and should play leading roles in our efforts to Look East-wards," he said. (ANI)

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