Tripura reaping peace dividend

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Agartala, Feb 21 (ANI): With the return of peace and normalcy, rapid development is taking place in Tripura. It is visible in all walks of life, especially in trade and commerce.

The state is not only slated to become one of the biggest trade partners of Bangladesh, but will also serve as the gateway to the Southeast Asia.

Development activities had come to a standstill in Tripura a few years ago because of the militant activities in the region.

Bomb blasts, killings and extortions were common occurrences and people were scared to even come out of their homes. But today, things have changed here, as trade, business, education, infrastructure, health services are all seeing an exponential growth in the region.

"Militancy has gone down and there is peace and harmony. And if can stay united, there will be no problems," said Tarun Shandilya, a teacher.

Over the last five years, Tripura has seen massive infrastructure development with huge funds being allocated for many projects.

As a result of which, the roads have been widened and National Highway 44 has been upgraded leading to better connectivity. Talks are also in progress for establishing a direct road link between Agartala to Kolkata via Dhaka.

Presently, the work is going on for improving rail connectivity in the extreme south up to Sabroom, which is just 72 km from Chittagong seaport in Bangladesh.

India has also signed a memorandum with Bangladesh to start the Akhaura-Agartala railway line. The growing trade partnership between India and Bangladesh will help Tripura become a major business hub in the future.

"Tripura Government is very interested in promoting business and trade. They are taking up the matter with the Centre, so I think in some time Tripura will be the best corridor via Chittagong and this will facilitate a lot of trade with Bangladesh and other Southeast Asian countries," said RC Podder, Managing Director, Tripura Road Transport Corporation.

Moreover, many multinational companies are also planning to set up their base in the region with the return of peace and normlacy in the state.

Both the Centre and the Tripura Government have been proactively organizing trade seminars and fairs here to promote trade with the other Southeast Asian countries, which has helped the local people in getting better jobs and improving their living standard.

"Things have changed now and there is no terrorism. Many companies and multinational organizations are coming up and the business is growing," said Shyamal Bhattachariya, an author.

"There is a great change and traveling from one place to another has become easier for people from remote areas. City life is becoming more comfortable and people from rural areas have benefited from the improved connectivity," added Tarun Shandilya, a teacher. (ANI)

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