Dimapur: Nagaland governor Jagdish Mukhi said Nagaland is facing an acute power deficit as the state generates only 26 MW against the peak requirement of around 115 MW.

Addressing the 70th plenary of the North Eastern Council (NEC) in Guwahati on Sunday, Mukhi said the council should include power in the thrust areas.

He said the state government has submitted a proposal to NEC for construction of 2.4MW Duilumroi HEP in Peren district for gap funding. He urged the NEC to consider sanctioning the project, saying power is critical for industrialisation and technological advancements and for overall economic development, a Raj Bhavan release said.

Drawing the attention of the NEC to Nagaland-specific issues, Mukhi pointed out that Nagaland is struggling with the problem of employability of the educated unemployed youth.

He suggested that capacity building and skill development in the region can give gainful employment to a large number of educated unemployed youth in various fields.

Noting that the youth of today have high aspirations and expectations, Mukhi said, “When these aspirations are not met, frustration sets in and they are easily misled to take to crime and anti-national activities.”

He added, “Most northeastern states are confronted with insurgent activities and if we are to usher in peace and development in the region, the youth must be provided with opportunities to lead productive lives.”

Mukhi said these youth need to be imparted with skills in tourism and hospitality, aviation, nursing, paramedics, wellness industry, music and entertainment, IT and the BPOs, sports, therapists, and specialised skills in the automobile sector and in the construction sector.

Stating that the various Naga tribes have their own rich costumes, patterns and crafts, he said basketry, using bamboo and cane is an integral part of Naga activity.

He said Nagaland has immense potential to export readymade apparel, handlooms, handicrafts and textile products to Southeast Asian countries.

Mukhi said harnessing this skill commercially will provide better means of income particularly to womenfolk, especially in rural areas.

“The NEC may therefore give due emphasis for development of loin-loom production of the NE States as a promotion of traditional industry,” he said.

As Nagaland is an agrarian state, Mukhi said, the future of the state lies in exploiting the opportunities in agriculture and allied activities. He said commercial crops like coffee and rubber need to be given a big push. Horticulture is another area where the state has immense potential, he said.

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