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Arunachal Pradesh
Assam
Manipur
Meghalaya
Mizoram
Nagaland
Sikkim
Tripura

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NER Databank is brought to you in association with National Informatics Center, Assam and North Eastern Council.

North East India
General Information
map of the northeast india

North East India comprises of :

  • Arunachal Pradesh

  • Assam

  • Manipur

  • Meghalaya

  • Mizoram

  • Nagaland

  • Tripura

International Boundaries -

North China
South West Bangladesh
North West Bhutan
East Myanmar

The Macmahon line separates North East India from Tibet. This region is connected with the rest of India only through a narrow corridor in North Bengal, having an approximate width of 33 km on the eastern side and 21 km on the western side. This narrow corridor is popularly known as the "Siliguri neck" or the "Chicken's neck".

Latitude : 21.57N - 29.30N Longitude : 89.46E - 97.30E
Area covered : 2.55 Lakh Sq.Km

North East India is mostly hilly; it has plains on both sides of the river Brahmaputra and the Himalayan range around it. The flora and fauna of this region is numerous and varied.

The region accounts for 7.8 % of the total land space of the country. Hill ranges forming part of the Himalayas guard the northern side of the region. The area is made up of mountains above the snow line and plains a little higher than sea level.

The region is of strategic importance for the country on account of the fact that nearly 90% of its borders form India's international boundaries.

Topography : About 70% of the region is hilly, and the topography varies within each state. Mountains and hills cover most of Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Nagaland, Meghalaya and about half of Tripura, one-fifth of Assam and nine-tenth of Manipur.

The plains of the region are mainly made up of separate land masses - the Brahmaputra Valley and the Barak Valley in Assam and the Tripura plains in the South. In Manipur, the valley is small, comprising only about 10% of the total area of the state.

The Brahmaputra Valley stretches longitudinally for about 730 km, from North Lakhimpur to Dhubri district in Assam. The Barak Valley, formed by the river Barak and its tributaries covers the districts of Cachar, Karimganj and Hailakandi of South Assam. The Tripura plain is an extension of the Ganga-Brahmaputra plain.

The topography of the hills is generally rugged and vast areas are inaccessible.

Rainfall :The rainy season in this region generally commences from March and lasts till the middle of October. The total annual rainfall varies significantly in the region. In Khasi and Jaintia Hills, the annual intensity of rainfall reaches the maximum of about 1080-cm around Cherrapunjee and Mawsynram (having highest rainfall in the world). It is significantly low in the rainshadow area of Nagaon district in Assam. About two-thirds of the annual total rainfall occurs during the four monsoon months of June to September.

Demography:

Total Population (Crores) Rural (in %) Urban(in %)
North East India North East India
3.85 88 75 12 25

(Source :Census data, 2001)

At present, the population of the NE region constitutes about 3.75 percent of the total population of the country.

Population density (Census data, 2001):

State Population density (per sq.Km)
Assam 340
Tripura 304
Manipur 107
Meghalaya 103
Nagaland 120
Mizoram 42
Arunachal Pradesh 13

The region is marked by uneven spatial distribution of population among the constituent states, the primary reason being that the plains and valleys offer more congenial conditions for absorption of population than the hills and difficult terrains.

Apart from Assam and Tripura, the NE states are mostly inhabited by tribes having unique social and cultural practices. Overall, tribals account for over 30% of the total population of this region. However, in Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Nagaland, scheduled tribes comprise more than 60% of the population. That is what gives these states a predominantly tribal character.

Major plantation -

Tea

Major crop - Rice
Major minerals - Coal, Petroleum & Natural Gas

Major religions -

Hinduism, Islam, Christianity,Buddhism

Languages spoken - English, Hindi, Assamese, Khasi, Garo, Jaintia, Manipuri, Mizo, Nagamese, Bengali, Nepali, Local dialects

Why invest in North East India?

  • Rich mineral resources
    Plentiful energy sources - some yet to be exploited, such as

    • The river Brahmaputra and its tributaries, forming the largest perennial water system in India, has immense potential for energy, irrigation and also transportation. North East India could be developed into India's powerhouse.

  • Fertile stretches of land in India along the Brahmaputra valley.
    Storehouse of horticultural products/plantation crops/vegetables/spices & rare forest products

  • Abundant forest resources

  • Diverse tourist attractions -Natural scenic beauty as well as rich cultural heritage.

  • Reasonably priced and easily available labour.

Also -

  • Growth Centres, IIDCs, Notified Industrial areas have been converted into Total Tax Free Zones for the next 10 years.

  • Subsidies on Transport, Capital Investment , Interest on the Working Capital etc. are available for industries in the NE Region.

Specially attractive for foreign investment because-

  • It is close to Myanmar, the gateway to the ASEAN countries. South East Asia is one of the fastest growing potential markets today.

North East India has the potential to emerge as the strategic base for foreign and domestic investors to tap this market. Both land and water routes could be made available to investors for export to East and South East Asia.

  • Proximity to the SAARC countries of Bhutan, Bangladesh and Nepal gives foreign investors the advantage of international trade through SAPTA (South Asian Preferential Trading Agreement).

In short, North Eastern India's location advantage and rich natural resources provide a backdrop to it's development as a base for foreign investors.

Copyright North Eastern Development Finance Corporation Ltd. 2002

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