Gangtok: Demanding a “peace bonus”, Sikkim Chief Minister Pawan Kumar Chamling on Friday appealed to the Centre to undertake more development initiatives in the Northeast, saying his state is yet to be connected by air and rail networks and condition of roads are pathetic.
Chamling sought “peace bonus” from the central government for remaining the most peaceful state in the country. “There is no insurgency, no militancy, no violence in Sikkim. Our state is the most peaceful in the country. We should be given a peace bonus by the Central government,” he told reporters here.
In 2000, the Central government had given a “peace bonus” of Rs 182.45 crore to Mizoram for being the most peaceful state in the Northeast after decades of insurgency.
The Chief Minister said construction of an airport in Sikkim has been going on for years while no progress has been made in implementing the plans for connecting the Himalayan state with trains. “Our only lifeline is road. But condition of roads are very pathetic. We urge the Central government to take more development initiatives in Sikkim as well as other Northeastern states,” he said.
The Chief Minister said Sikkim has tremendous potential to be the “Switzerland of India” and a “Ram Rajya” as it is blessed with tremendous beauty and natural resources but it needs help from the Central government.