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QUESTION NO.2970 NEW DIVISION FOR CENTRE-STATE RELATIONS

May 11, 2016

LOK SABHA
UNSTARRED QUESTION NO.2970
TO BE ANSWERED ON 11.05.2016


NEW DIVISION FOR CENTRE-STATE RELATIONS

2970. KUNWAR BHARATENDRA:

Will the Minister of EXTERNAL AFFAIRS be pleased to state:

(a) whether her Ministry has set up a new division for Centre-State relations and if so, the details thereof;

(b) the details of functions performed by this Division; and

(c) the results achieved in bringing the States and the missions abroad closer?

ANSWER
THE MINISTER OF STATE IN THE MINISTRY OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
[GEN. (DR) V. K. SINGH (RETD)]


(a) Ministry of External Affairs has set up a new division – "States Division” - in the Ministry in October 2014 to coordinate with States and Union Territories for further facilitation of their efforts to promote their exports and tourism and attract more overseas investments and expertise. The Division is headed by a Joint Secretary, assisted by two Deputy Secretary level officers and supported by a section.

(b) The functions of the States Division are to coordinate facilitation of efforts of states in promoting their exports, tourism and attract more overseas investment and expertise. The objective of the Division is to coordinate facilitation of efforts in these areas between our Mission/Post(s) and State/Union Territories Governments as well as foreign diplomatic and trade missions in India. It aims to assist States and Union Territories by sharing with them, where required, this Ministry's experience and expertise through training and capacity building in areas relating to external linkages relating to trade, investment, cultural and other such areas.

(c) Many steps were taken to bring the States/UTs and Missions abroad closer. On the initiative of the States Division, the States and Union Territories were requested to appoint Nodal Officers who will be liaising with Missions/Posts abroad. Heads of Missions were requested to appoint Nodal Officers in the Missions who will co-ordinate with the states in their efforts. List of Nodal Officers in States / Union Territories and Missions abroad were prepared and exchanged vice versa to co-ordinate with each other. Officers at Missions abroad and at headquarters in MEA were asked to opt for a state each for specialising in it by understanding its specific needs by interacting with the officers of the states. States Division, in co-ordination with the Missions/territorial divisions concerned, facilitated the visits of S. Sukhbir Singh Badal, Hon'ble Deputy Chief Minister (HDCM) of Punjab to Poland and Hungary to attract investment in the state in July, 2015; Shri Manohar Lal Khattar, Hon'ble Chief Minister (CM) of Haryana to USA & Canada from 16th to 25th August 2015 to project Haryana as preferred investment destination; Shri Devendra Fadnavis, Hon'ble CM of Maharashtra to Japan from 8- 13 September 2015 to attend "Maharashtra State Investment Promotion Seminar”; induce investment in the state and to unveil the statue of Bharat Ratna, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar in Watyarn; Shri K. Chandrashekar Rao, CM of Telangana, to China from 08 to 15 September 2015 to participate in the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Dalian, China; Shri Shiv Raj Singh Chauhan, Hon'ble Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh to Japan and Korea from 29 September – 06 October, 2015 and Smt. Mamata Bannerjee, Hon'ble CM of West Bengal to U.K. to promote investment partnership and to sign a number of MoUs pertaining to urban development and education. States Division, in coordination with the states and the Missions concerned, also facilitated the signing of three sister-city agreements i.e. Chennai – Chongqing, Hyderabad – Qingdao, Aurangabad – Dunhuang and a Sister State agreement between Karnataka – Sichuan on 15 May 2015 during Hon'ble Prime Minister's visit to China. States Division also facilitated the signing of 'Agreement on the Establishment of Sister State/Province Relations between State Government of Andhra Pradesh, Republic of India and Provincial Government of Sichuan, People's Republic of China on 08th April 2016. Signing of these agreements will enhance the outreach of the states in international arena. States Division, in close coordination with the State authorities in Maharashtra, Kerala and other southern states, Missions/Posts abroad, RPOs Mumbai & Cochin and Indian Railways helped in evacuation of stranded Indian nationals from Yemen. States Division helped in relief and rescue operations in the wake of the earthquake in Nepal on 25 April 2015 where thousands of Indians were stranded.

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