Recapitulating his eight years in office, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said he had not done any such work that would make Indians hang their heads in shame. Modi, who completed eight years as prime minister on May 26, said he had not spared any effort in serving the country and had made an honest attempt to build the India that Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel dreamt of.
Addressing a gathering after the inauguration of a 200-bed multispecialty hospital in Gujarat’s Rajkot district, Modi said the BJP-led government at the Centre had worked to protect the dignity of the poor during this period. He was on a visit to his home state six months ahead of the assembly elections scheduled for December.
“I have spared no effort in the service to the nation in the last eight years. I have neither allowed, nor personally not done any work that will make you or even a single person of India hang their head in shame. In the last eight years, we have made an honest attempt to build the India of Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Patel’s dream,” he said during his speech in Atkot town.
“Mahatma Gandhi wanted an India in which the poor, Dalits, adivasi and women are empowered, where cleanliness and health are part of life, where the economy is based on swadeshi (local) solutions,” the PM added.
He gave an account of the work the central government had done over the past eight years, and said pucca houses had been provided to over three crore families; 10 crore families got toilets under the open-defecation free initiative, nine crore women received LPG connections; 2.5 crore families got power connections while six crore families got tap water connections; over 50 crore people had been covered to get free treatment under PM-JAY.
“These are not just figures, but this is a proof of our commitment to provide dignity to the poor of the country. In the last eight years, my government has worked to uplift the poor,” Modi said.
He added that the Centre opened food grain stocks for the poor during the Covid-19 pandemic. “As the pandemic hit, people faced difficulties in getting food supplies. So we opened up the food grain stock of the country for the poor. We provided financial assistance in Jan Dhan bank accounts of women during the pandemic. We opened our health services,” he said, adding, “and when the vaccine came, we ensured that every Indian gets vaccinated and that too for free.”
Talking about poverty, PM Modi said he did not have to learn through books or television to know the plight of the poor, as he had gone through such a phase himself.
Modi praised the “double-engine” government at the Centre and in his home state of Gujarat. He said it had ensured the state’s fast-paced growth, which he said was not the case before 2014.
“Due to the double engine government, Gujarat is achieving new heights of development. Before 2014, things were different. If we sent any development project files to the Centre (UPA government), they used to reject. They could not see any development project…,” he added.
(With PTI inputs)
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