Vajpayee will be remembered by northeastern people: Meghalaya CM

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Shillong : Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma on Thursday expressed grief over the death of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, saying he will be remembered by the northeasterners for his keen interest in developing this landlocked region.

The Meghalaya government has announced a state holiday on Friday as a mark of respect to the former Prime Minister.

"Vajpayee was a veteran and able administrator who served the nation in different spheres. He was a Member of Parliament for over four decades, being elected ten times to the Lok Sabha and twice to the Rajya Sabha until 2009 when he retired from active politics," Sangma said.

"Vajpayee will be remembered by the people of Meghalaya in particular and northeastern states as a whole for his keen interest to develop the North Eastern states was very clear when he day long brainstorming on socio- economic development of the northeastern states with his key ministers then L.K. Advani, Yashwant Sinha, Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission K.C. Pant and Governors and Chief Ministers of the northeastern states to Shillong on January 21, 2000," the Chief Minister said.

Sangma said it was under Vajpayee that the Central government created a separate department of Development of North-Eastern Region (DONER) to ensure all round development in the region, the East-West corridor connecting Assam's Silchar with Gujarat's Porbandar and many more.

"In his passing away, the nation has lost an eminent public figure and multi-faceted personality who made immense contribution for the greater good of our country," the Chief Minister said conveying his condolences and sympathies on behalf of the people of Meghalaya and from his family members, his late father Purno Agitok Sangma to Vajpayee's family members.