IIM Shillong to set up the first Gati Shakti Research Chair. 


Rama Krishna Sangem

IIM Shillong hosted a conclave on “Connecting India’s North-East with the World” in the presence of Sarbananda Sonowal, Union Minister, Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways as Chief Guest.

An MoA was signed between IIM Shillong and the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW) to set up the First Gati Shakti Research Chair at IIM Shillong, which aims to discuss the multimodal logistics development strategy focused on connecting the North Eastern Region (NER) with wider national and international regions to fortify the local economy. Shri Sonowal mentioned that in the spirit of team India that everyone is integrated and working towards Viskhit Bharat.

Under the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, connectivity has emerged as a cornerstone for positioning the Northeast as India’s growth engine. Over the past eight years, numerous long-standing projects have been successfully completed, with a particular emphasis on enhancing connectivity through waterways in addition to road, rail, and air routes, the minister said, according to a press release.

He further mentioned that, India is lucky enough to have the maximum number of youths below 35 years of age which is a sign of a powerful nation, and students from institutions like IIMs have responsibilities to work and contribute for the nation. Hon’ble minister further mentioned that the North Eastern Region, with its over 4,500 kilometers of international borders shared with Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, and Myanmar, holds significant strategic and economic importance.

Leveraging its strategic position as the gateway to the further east, the NER has long attracted the attention of traders, with the Brahmaputra and Barak rivers serving as a vital transportation artery for goods destined for the Kolkata port through Bengal.

Atul Kulkarni member BoG mentioned working towards better connectivity, reducing logistics costs and creating a framework for the seamless movement of goods. Shri Kulkarni further mentioned about the need of a Master Plan for the entire NE Region of the logistics network.


Gati Shakti impact on North East

While delivering the address, Prof. D.P. Goyal, Director IIM Shillong, mentioned about the 15-year journey of IIM Shillong, underscored its enduring mission to foster knowledge generation and dissemination. Prof. Goyal also highlighted the establishment of the Gati Shakti Research Chair, emphasizing its potential to spearhead transformative research endeavors. Through a MoA, IIM Shillong aims to contribute significantly to comprehensive research efforts, envisioning a significant impact not only within the Northeast region but also on a national scale.

Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Centre for Policy Research and Analysis, IIM Shillong hosted a Roundtable during early hours to discuss on Gati Shakti at North Eastern Region: Challenges & Opportunities. The senior officials of the NEC, MoSPW and stakeholders of North East attended the event and discussed on prominent development strategies related to logistics for strengthening the economy in NER. The discussion will be centred around connecting the NER to the wider national and international regions through inland waterways.

The panel also discussed the operationalisation and steps forward for implementing the NER multimodal logistics development strategies and policies. This discussion intended to seek a directive for implementing the policies related to multimodal logistics in NER. It is imperative to synchronize the advancement of multimodal logistics in India with broader connectivity initiatives unfolding in the Bay of Bengal region.

The meeting explored opportunities to have a comprehensive approach, ensuring alignment between the visions of both private players and the government with on-the-ground realities and needs and also to integrate the NER with economic growth centers and networks within India and neighboring countries but also stimulate positive transformations in the local economy, thus restoring the region’s glory.


Rama Krishna Sangem

Ramakrishna chief editor of excel India online magazine and website

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