Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Saturday inaugurated the Namami Barak festival at Silchar, Karimganj and Hailakandi in the state's Barak Valley region.He also announced construction of three new bridges over Barak river and a helipad in the region to boost connectivity.Reiterating the government's commitment towards development, Sonowal said a bridge in each of the three districts in the Barak Valley would be built and added that the PWD Department has already been directed for preparing Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the same."Barak and Brahmaputra rivers have same language and that language is of brotherhood, unity and harmony. Namami Barak is not only a festival but it is a new journey to explore these parts of Assam," said the Chief Minister while adding that the festival is being organised to revive humanistic values, to discover resources and possibilities of the land.
"Namami Barak would boost our commitment to develop the economy of the state and motivate us to engage with renewed vigour to take Assam into high growth trajectory," said the Chief Minister, while adding that Barak Valley had been neglected for long and people have lots of anguish and disappointments.Saying Namami Barak is an effort to ensure that the people of Barak Valley can move forward in equal footing with the rest of the state, Sonowal stated that just like Namami Brahmaputra was inaugurated by then President Pranab Mukherjee, Namami Barak is also fortunate to have President Ram Nath Kovind's participation.He also said that those forces inimical to state's peace and development must be defeated by the people living across the plains and hills, Barak and Brahmaputra Valley of the state, by staying united.
He also urged the people to strive for building a society based on equality and harmony as envisioned by Swami Vivekananda.Chief Minister also said that the Central Government under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is giving lot of importance to develop Barak valley along with the whole of northeast. "Railway ministry has introduced many new trains from Barak Valley and today also a new train connecting Silchar-Dibrugarh-Trivandrum has been flagged off," he said adding direct air connectivity between Dibrugarh and Silchar has also started.The Chief Minister also requested Union MoS Railways Rajen Gohain to start a new train from Saurashtra to Dibrugarh and Silchar.Construction of the mini secretariat at Silchar would start soon and Vivekananda Cultural and Research Institute is also going to be set up here, he said."River navigation from Silchar to the Bay of Bengal via Bangladesh would be started and this would boost the trade and business activities in the region, he said.He said that Panchgram Paper Mill, which has a key role in the region's economy, would also be revived be within the next six months.