Itanagar: Arunachal Pradesh Assembly Speaker Pasang Dorjee Sona said on Monday that migration of people from villages to urban areas has not only stopped, but “we are witnessing a reverse migration towards the areas bordering China”.
He said that this reverse trend is because of the projects and schemes launched by the government of India in the areas of Arunachal Pradesh along with the Chinese border.
He said that the ambitious Vibrant Villages Programme (VVP) scheme is one such programme which inspired the people of the border areas to give up on leaving their ancestral villages in search of livelihood.
“We have witnessed the reverse migration towards the border villages after the government initiated several mega projects and schemes along the border with China,” Sona told reporters on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), Indian Region Zone III.
He said that in terms of national security and livelihood of the people, the VVP and the mega road projects, which are now under implementation, are very significant.
“My constituency shares its border with China’s Tibet. So there are always issues. However, under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the government has undertaken significant development activities along the border,” he said.
He said that these areas were neglected for a long time. “The border areas earlier lacked basic infrastructure, healthcare, and education facilities which prompted people to leave and migrate. When the borders are vacant, incursions are inevitable,” he said.
The Speaker said that the reverse migration phenomenon in the border areas is being recognized as a strategic asset for national security.
He said that after the VVP scheme was introduced, the emphasis was laid upon road connectivity, telecom connectivity, drinking water, electricity including solar and wind energy, mobile and Internet connectivity, tourist centres, multi-purpose centres and healthcare infrastructure and wellness centres and digital connectivity which in turn attract people to come back to the border areas.
The VVP scheme was launched by Union Home Minister Amit Shah on April 10 this year. The scheme would be executed in 2967 border villages in 19 districts adjoining international borders in Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and the UT of Ladakh.
Around Rs. 4,800/- crores have been allocated for the scheme for the financial years up to 2025-26.
In the first phase, around 662 border villages in four states and the UT of Ladakh have been identified on priority which includes 455 villages in Arunachal Pradesh.
Under the centrally-sponsored VVP scheme, all round development would be carried out in the identified border villages aiming to improve the quality of life of the people.
The scheme would also encourage the people to live along the border areas thereby reversing the migration from these areas and adding to security of the border.