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Vikas and Virasat has got a boost in past 10 years: PM Modi in Guwahati

Feb 04, 2024 02:19 PM IST

Addressing his first public meeting at Assam’s Guwahati ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, the PM blamed previous governments for failing to ensure development

Guwaharti: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said that in the past 10 years, his government has laid equal focus on speedy development while reviving the country’s heritage.

PM Modi addressed a public gathering in Assam’s Guwahati on Sunday (Twitter Photo)

Addressing his first public meeting at Assam’s Guwahati ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, the PM blamed previous governments for failing to ensure development while reviving India’s glorious past at the same time.

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“Civilizations which used to be very prosperous till 200 years ago, now lie in ruins. Unfortunately, those who ruled the country for long after independence failed to recognise the importance of religious places. For political gains, they created a trend of feeling ashamed of one’s own culture and past,” Modi said, in an indirect jibe to the Congress.

Also Read: Roads, medical colleges and more in Modi’s 11,600 cr infra push for Assam

“No country can become developed by erasing, forgetting its past and by cutting its roots. I am satisfied that in the past 10 years, the situation has changed in India. The double-engine government of BJP [Bharatiya Janata Party] has made both development and heritage (Vikas and Virasat) part of its policy,” he added.

Modi said that the outcome of such a policy can be seen in rural areas of Assam, where places of faith and history have been boosted with modern facilities. This has happened concurrently with a focus on development, he said.

“Youths of the country have got direct benefit from our focus on development and heritage. There’s enthusiasm in the tourism and religious pilgrimage sectors these days,” the PM said.

He cited the examples of over 85 million devotees visiting the Kashi Vishwanath Corridor in Varanasi in the past year, over 50 million visiting Ujjain to witness Mahakal-Mahalaok, over 1.9 million going to Kedarnath Temple and 2.4 million visiting Ayodhya within 12 days of consecration of Ram Temple.

“The same will happen after the Divyalok Pariyojana is implemented at Kamakhya Temple in Guwahati,” said Modi.

The PM stated that in the past 10 years, the number of colleges and universities in the state has increased manifold. Earlier, educational institutes of repute used to be based only in a few select cities. But now it has changed, and there’s a network of such institutes across the country, he said.

“Earlier, Assam used to have just six medical colleges, but now, under the BJP government, it has increased to 12. The state is now on its way to becoming the biggest centre of cancer care in the northeast,” said Modi.

As part of Modi’s infrastructure boost, Modi announced a new medical college at Karimganj in the Barak Valley region of the state as he laid the foundation stones of a project worth Rs.3,250 crore to improve amenities and infrastructure in the existing Gauhati Medical College Hospital (GMCH).

The PM mentioned the special focus on the development of the northeastern state by the BJP in the past 10 years and highlighted improved connectivity in the region. He informed that budget outlay for development in the northeastern states has increased fourfold since his government came to power in 2014.

“In the past 10 years, we launched a campaign to provide electricity to all households. Now we are on the way to ensuring zero electricity bills (for consumers). In this year’s budget, we have announced a big project for roof-top solar (electricity),” said Modi.

Also Read: Why is PM Modi’s two-day Assam visit crucial for Northeast?

The PM said that in the first phase, the government would help 100 million families set up solar (panels) on their rooftops. This will reduce their electricity bills and those who produce surplus electricity can earn an income by selling it.

Speaking about the projects that are underway and work done by the BJP-led government, Modi emphasized the role of Assam and other northeastern states in fulfilling the goal of making India the third biggest economic power in the world and transforming the country into a developed one by 2047.

On Sunday, the PM inaugurated and laid the foundation stones of infrastructure projects worth Rs.11,600 cr in Assam. The projects include new roads, widening of existing roads, new medical college, upgradation of stadiums and an access corridor at Kamakhya Temple in Guwahati, one of the most popular and sacred sites among Hindus.

“All these projects will increase connectivity of Assam and the rest of northeast with countries of Southeast Asia. They will create employment opportunities in the tourism sector, boost sporting talents and improve medical education and healthcare in the region,” Modi said in his address.

“This is the first time in the state’s history that infrastructure projects worth 11,600 cr have been announced in one day,” said Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma while highlighting the past projects and ongoing projects that are underway in Assam at present.

Sarma also spoke about the peace deals with terror outfits signed in the past three years that have led to thousands of youths giving up arms and joining the mainstream and peace returning to the state.

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