Northeast's development is of utmost importance for Centre: Jitendra Singh

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Thenzawl (Mizoram), Apr 14 (PTI) Union minister Jitendra Singh Wednesday said the development of northeastern states is of utmost importance for the Centre.

Addressing a public rally in support of the BJP candidate in the by-election to Mizoram's Serchhip assembly constituency, he said soon after taking over as prime minister, Narendra Modi had pledged that he would give special attention to the eastern regions of the country because they had suffered negligence in the past and without the equitable development of these regions, the overall wholesome growth of India was not possible.

'Development of the northeastern states is of utmost importance for the Centre. The government is committed to ensure their equitable development,' said Singh, the Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office (PMO).

Zoram People's Movement (ZPM) nominee Lalduhoma (71), the incumbent MLA whose disqualification under the anti-defection law in November last year necessitated the bypoll, ruling Mizo National Front (MNF) vice-president Vanlalzawma (65) and Congress general secretary P C Laltlansanga (48) are in the fray for the bypoll on April 17.

The BJP, which has one legislator in the 40-member assembly, has fielded Lahriatrenga Chhangte (56), a retired mining engineer and former party spokesperson who belongs to Serchhip town.

Singh, who is also the Minister of State for the Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), said as long as Modi is at the helm of affairs, every region is equally important for us and there will be special focus on neglected and deprived areas. PTI AKV ZMN