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Two time zones for India? Arunachal Pradesh CM Pema Khandu agrees

File photo: Arunachal CM Pema Khandu. Photograph: (Twitter)

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Jun 12, 2017, 07.01 AM (IST) Kartikeya Sharma

Arunachal Pradesh’s chief minister Pema Khandu told WION that northeast should have a separate time zone. He is the second chief minister after former Assam CM Tarun Gogoi who also wanted to introduce a separate time zone for the northeast. 

“A separate time zone for northeast would save working day light-time and save electricity,” said BJP chief minister Pema Khandu.

Indian Standard Time(IST) is calculated on the basis of 82.5 E longitude, in Shankargarh Fort, in Mirzapur near Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh.

India’s geographical spread from the east to west is vast and there is a huge difference between sunset and sunrise time in eastern and western parts of the country. 

In order to increase productivity, tea gardens in northeast also follow their separate time zone as “Tea Garden Time” or baagaan(garden) time.

There are different views on the issue as many experts feel the cost of saving electricity wouldn’t be much and it could lead to chaos in a densely populated country like India. The change could also affect the transportation network like the railways. 

But this was not the case when the British ruled India. The British had divided India into Bombay time zone, Calcutta time zone and Baagaan time zone. 

The United States which extends 4800 km from east to west has nine different time zones. On the other hand, India with a 3000 km landmass from east to west has just one time zone.

Successive governments have tried to resolve this issue but have failed to arrive at a solution.

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