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Assam CM Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma attends MoU signing for Slipway at Pandu | Tapping waterways potential critical for Assam’s growth: CM

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From Assam Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) :
(Except for the headline, no change has been made by Gana Adhikar Media Network News Desk in the text of the Communique received from the Assam Chief Minister’s Office)

Guwahati, August 26 : Chief Minister Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma along with Union Minister of Ports, Shipping and Waterways Sarbananda Sonowal today attended the MoU signing programme between Inland Water Authority of India & Hooghly Cochin Shipyard Ltd. for setting up a new ‘Ship Repair Facility’ at Pandu in Guwahati.

Providing a major boost to the economic growth of the region under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of Act East Policy, the facility is expected to bolster waterways connectivity for facilitating movement of big cargo to and from the region.

As per the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), the design and implementation of this project with best standards would be ensured. The technical support is to be provided by IIT Madras. The facility – also known as Slipway – is to be developed on a land of 3.67 acres provided by Government of Assam and is expected to be completed by August 2023. The facility is to be built at an estimated cost of Rs 75 crores.

The Chief Minister said that there are nearly 200 vessels plying on the rivers of Assam and for repairing these vassals, they had to be taken to Kolkata. Now, with this facility in Guwahati,  repairs will be done here which will save time and money. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been putting lots of emphasis on the development of road, railways, waterways, airways and internet connectivity in the NE, he said. 

He thanked Union Minister Sonowal for the decision to set up the Slipway at Pandu and for announcing to build a modern convention centre at Pandu Slipway site. He also requested the Union Minister for setting up a maritime cum shipping institute in Assam so that required manpower for the emerging sector can be created while also generating employment opportunities for local youth.

“Our civilisations prospered by the rivers and under Prime Minister Modi’s leadership, we are harnessing the power of the rivers to bring prosperity and growth. Mongla and Chittagong Ports in Bangladesh are being connected with waterways of the state and it will open up vast opportunities for trade & businesses”, he said.

Speaking at the programme, Union Minister Sonowal said that Prime Minister Modi has relentlessly pushed for NE’s growth through Act East Policy. BBIN & ASEAN countries have been brought closer to NE region through Act East Policy. 

Saying that Ship Repair Facility at Pandu will bring a major boost to the economic infrastructure of Assam, he asserted that rivers will fuel Assam & NE’s growth and waterways here are being developed so that prosperity and employment opportunities can be ensured.

“Before independence, the British used to export Assam’s products like timber, coal etc through the waterways to other parts of the world and we must harness the rivers for revolutionising water transport here”, Sonowal said. 

Industry Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary, Union MoS of Ports, Shipping and Waterways Shantanu Thakur, MP Queen Oja, Secretary of Ports, Shipping and Waterways Ministry Dr Sanjeev Ranjan were also present on the occasion among others. 

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