Gangtok, Jan 18: Sikkim may get an airport soon with Prime Minister Narendra Modi giving an indication in this regard here today while promising to look into the various demands put forth by the state government, including grant of tribal status to leftover communities.
Addressing a conference of Agriculture Ministers of states here, he said an airport in the state will not only boost tourism but also help in quick transportation of Sikkim's organic flowers and other products to other states and global market.
Hailing the quality of flowers of the state, Modi said, "Sikkim grows some flowers with long shelf life. There are different fragrances. There is big global market for fragrance. They want organic raw material. If the flowers have to be transported, there is need for infrastructure. So, an airport needs to be built in Sikkim."
Commending the efforts of the state government in promoting organic farming, Modi suggested the state to brand organic products and set an online platform for sale of such items.
He also presented a certificate to state chief minister Pawan Kumar Chamling appreciating Sikkim for becoming 100 per cent organic farming state in the country. With regard to demands of the state government, Modi said, "whatever Pawanji has demanded, the government of India will consider them seriously."
Earlier, Chamling demanded that the Centre grant tribal status to leftover communities and pass a resolution to ensure two communities - Limbo and Tamang get reservation in the state Assembly.
Presently, tribal status has been declared to four communities including Limbo and Tamang out of 15 communities in the state.
That apart, Chamling sought the Centre to permit entry of Buddhist monk Gyalwa karmapa Ogen Thinly Dorgy into the state Chamling also demanded biofertiliser subsidy and conversion of the existing regional Centre of ICAR into a national research centre for organic farming.