Manipur Vision 2030

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By Dr. Bishwanjit Loitongbam

As per instruction of India’s PM Narendra Modi, NITI Aayog aims to triple India’s GDP by 2032. Underpinning this initiative, annual GDP growth rate is required to grow at least eight percent on average for the next 15 years. This initiative is known as ‘India Vision 2032’. It is undertaken in accordance with United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). According to UN, SDG is defined as ‘development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs’.

At the Millennium Summit held in September 2012, UN had adopted a vision called Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to free the world from extreme poverty andto uphold the principles of human dignity, equality and equity. It has eight main targets. They are – reducing extreme poverty and endhunger, providing primary education to all children, promoting gender equality and increasing women empowerment, reducing mother or child mortality rate, saving lives from HIV/AIDS, Malaria and other diseases, ensuring sustainable environment and developing global partnership for development of different countries. Even though all of these targets had notfully been achieved ahead of 2015 timeframe, some of the targets were fulfilled. For example, the extreme poverty had been reduced by half in 2010.Between 2000 and 2012, in Sub-Saharan Africa, 3.3 million of people had been saved from Malaria.22 million lives had been saved from tuberculosis in 1995.2.3 billion people gained access to safe drinking water. Primary school enrolment of boys and girls increased significantly in equal proportion in developing countries. Women started holding important position in political arena. In 46 countries, it makes women occupied 30 per cent of their total MP. By 2013, developing countries increased their exports to developed countries by 80 per cent thereby reducing their debt burden. In spite of these achievement, protection of environment, reducing hunger, averting death of children less than 5 years old due to malnutrition/undernourishment, reducing infant or mother mortality rate, etc. could not be reduced. These targets have been failed to achieve up to the extent it has targeted. Though access to antiretroviral therapy (ART) for HIV infected people saved 6.6 million, it further requires expandingits coverage in order to save many more.

In continuance of MDG, UN has recently proposed ‘The Vision 2030’.It contains 17 SDGs along with 169 targets.It is mainly based on MDGs and its unfulfilled targets and also a step to convert those targets into action. This vision contained17 important SDGs namely – 1. No poverty, 2. No hunger, 3. Good health and well-being, 4. Quality Education, 5. Gender equality, 6. Clean water and sanitation, 7. Affordable and clean energy, 8. Decent work and economic growth, 9. Industry, innovation and infrastructure, 10. Reduced inequalities, 11. Sustainable cities and communities, 12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production, 13. Climate action, 14. Life below water, 15. Life on Land, 16. Peace, justice and strong institutions and 17. Partnerships for the goals.

In conformity with the Vision 2030, NITI Aayog has initiated to make vision 2030 for India too. As far as North East States are concerned,making of Vision 2030 document for Assam, Nagaland and Mizoram is underway. Likewise, Manipur is also preparing ‘Manipur Vision 2030’ document. Centre for Study of Social Exclusion and Inclusive Policy (CSSEIP), Manipur University has solely responsible for making this vision document. It is highly recommended that while making this document one should thoroughly examine SDGs, NER Vision 2020 and Act East Policy. It is a step to lay the foundation of future economic, political and social condition of Manipur. Some points are highlighted herewith to be considered in making this vision.

Manipur’s NSDP should try to achieve double digit growth rate. This economic growth alters sectoral composition – agriculture, manufacturing and services sector – of our economy. It is questionable whether agriculture should be expanded more or we should give more priority to already well-developed services sector.On the other hand, it will be prudent to include some policy program to improve our retarded manufacturing sector.If these three sectors can attain a balanced growth, then the motive of making the vision bears fruit. Investment is highly needed to regenerate this region.We should carefully examine what kind of investment and from whom we should look for investment.A priority list should be made stating what investment should be taken from which countries and how this investment should be attained, and what investment should be asked from Centre. In order toenable local firms to sell our local products to the global market, we should make apolicy program to find out what and which products should be focused and produced.A roadmap should be made to increaseeconomic activityof each 8 states by connecting Manipur to other North East states through value chain link.

People’s standard of livingand quality of life need to be improved. It is highly necessary to gain access to safe drinking water to every household, and to improve transportation and communication means. The two national highways which are considered as our lifeline remain as usual. There is no new road being made. When Act East Policy is fully operational, Manipur will be called a gateway. The condition of national highway connecting from Imphal to Moreh is notup to the level of international standard. It is necessary to construct express way to connect Manipur with other states and foreign countries. Our energy used is going to be increased in coming years. It is impossible to establish heavy industry in Manipur with this current state of energy such as power. Presently small and light industries are facing many difficulties in undertaking their economic activities due to shortage of power unit. So, it will be highly benefitted if we can highlight the adequate and necessary energy and infrastructure facilities for making Manipur an ‘industrial state’ through this vision. Urbanization process has not been kicked off in Manipur yet.The rapid expansion of this process should be encouraged. Rapid urbanization process leads to higher economic development.

It should ensure to provide primary education to all children particularly girls without leaving any behind. Our health sector is still highly backward. Forget about hill and far away regions, there is any good government hospital in sub urban areas. Thus, all rush to RIMS and JNIMS for treatment. There is still news of child or mother death during child birth. The number of HIV infected person has not been reduced. The participation of women in Manipur politics seems insignificant. Promoting women participation in decision making body in Manipur is necessary. It will be good if we reduce deployment of women only for distributing tea, handing over certificate, memento during award distributing ceremony and for felicitation program. This condition might improve only when they attain higher level of education and they are promoted into decision making body as possible as we can. We should try not to deteriorate from the present environment condition as well as we should try to improve from this present state. In SDGs program, it contains not only to conserve life on land but also life on water. It is recommended to include policies to use natural resources efficiently and effectively to develop our state. In short, it means that it ensuressustainable environment and sustainable use of natural resources.

In order to bring about a change and development in Manipur, every section of our society should work together. ‘Manipur Vision 2030’ has provided this opportunity. To make this vision complete and more sensible (or realistic), we should contribute our best to it. Bringing about a change in socio-economic condition of Manipur at a large scale requires inclusion of necessities and need of each section of the society afterthorough examination. It requires honesty and sacrifice. In order to make this vision success, it requires to state clearly how to implement ‘monitoring process’ and if we fail to make a plan about how to do ‘resource mobilization’ in order to achieve those targets of the vision, we will face a big problem in the future.

If someone wants to give any suggestion or commend regarding ‘Manipur Vision 2030’, Please feel free to contact at this email ([email protected]) on or before 25th March, 2016.

Source: Imphal Free Press

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