The North Eastern Council will now be chaired by the Union Home Minister, a government statement said today.
The Council is a statutory body with Governors and Chief Ministers of all the eight northeastern states as its members, it said.
It was at present being chaired by the Minister of Development of North Eastern Region.
The Cabinet has approved the proposal of the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) for the nomination of the Union Home Minister as ex-officio Chairman of North Eastern Council (NEC) with the Minister of DoNER would serve as Vice Chairman of the Council, the statement said.
"NEC implements various projects through the state and central agencies. Under the new arrangement with Home Minister as Chairman and Minister of DoNER as Vice Chairman and all the Governors and Chief Ministers of North Eastern States as Members would provide a forum for discussing inter-state matters more comprehensively and also consider common approaches to be taken in future," it said.
The change will "reposition" the council established under the North Eastern Council Act, 1971 to become a more effective body for the North Eastern Region, it said.
"NEC can now also perform the tasks undertaken by the various Zonal Councils to discuss inter-state issues such as drug trafficking, smuggling of arms and ammunition, boundary disputes etc," it said.
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