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Narendra Modi in Gujarat as it happened: PM inaugurates Sardar Sarovar dam, says BJP-led Centre sensitive to needs of farmers

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Narendra Modi in Gujarat as it happened: PM inaugurates Sardar Sarovar dam, says BJP-led Centre sensitive to needs of farmers
  • 17:40 (IST)

    Narendra Modi encourages 'Blue Revolution' while addressing rally in Amreli

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi also pitches for a 'blue revolution', asking people to use waterways and sea ways for transporting their products.


  • 17:37 (IST)

    Sardar Sarovar project expected to provide potable water to 53% of Gujarat's villages
    The Sardar Sarovar dam is intended to provide drinking water to 131 urban centres and 9,633 villages (53 percent of total 18,144 villages of Gujarat) and irrigation facilities for 18.54 hectares of land covering 3,112 villages under 73 talukas in 15 districts.
    Besides Gujarat, the Narmada canal will also irrigate 2,46,000 hectares of land in the desert districts of Barmer and Jalore of Rajasthan.

  • 17:32 (IST)

    Narmada Bachao Andolan's history
    The Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA), led by activist Medha Patkar, launched an anti-dam agitation  and took the matter to the Supreme Court over environmental concerns and the rehabilitation of tribals from their dwellings as their lands were likely to be submerged in the dam water.
    The Gujarat government promised in the court to give a robust rehabilitation package to those affected, but the NBA did not accept it. In 1996, the Supreme Court stayed the project, further delaying the work on the dam.
    The apex court, on October 18, 2000, in a 2-1 majority judgement, allowed construction of the dam up to the height of 138 metres subject to completion of the rehabilitation process. However, despite the court verdict, the construction of the dam continued to face hurdles on rehabilitation issue. 
    In response to the NBA, the pro-dam people of Gujarat also launched many agitations citing its benefits. Modi sat on a 51-hour fast in 2006 as the Gujarat chief
    minister after the UPA government refused to allow raising the height of the dam.

  • 17:28 (IST)

    Controversy around Sardar Sarovar project
    The project was mired in many controversies and faced impediments from pro- and anti-dam activists, till finally the Supreme Court gave the nod for its construction in 2000.
    The delay in the completion of the dam was due to several reasons, including a dispute between Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh on the sharing of the water and electricity. In 1964, the Centre appointed an expert committee under the chairmanship of Dr AN Khosla, to resolve the dispute.
    However, Madhya Pradesh did not agree to the water sharing formula recommended by the Khosla Committee, after which the Narmada Water Dispute Tribunal was constituted in 1969. "The tribunal gave its final award in December 1979," after which the construction was started in 1980, it said.

  • 17:25 (IST)

    Seventeen days after becoming prime minister, Narendra Modi approved raising the dam height to 138 metres

    In just 17 days after becoming the prime minister in 2014, the Modi government gave the final permission to raise the height of the Sardar Sarovar dam to 138 metres and install the gates.

  • 17:19 (IST)

    Modi at the inauguration of Sardar Sarovar dam on Sunday afternoon

    Image courtesy: PTI

  • 17:15 (IST)

    'I can't dream small,' said Narendra Modi while inaugurating Sardar Sarovar dam

    "You know me, I can't do small things. I don't think small, don't do small things. With 1.25 billion people with me, I can't dream small," he said.


  • 17:07 (IST)

    Amit Shah calls Narendra Modi 'personification of spirit of India'

    Lavishing praise on Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his 67th birthday, Mr Shah said the prime minister's life in many ways was a "personification of the spirit of India" and claimed his sensitivity towards the aspirations of the poor had led to "historic poverty alleviation initiatives taking shape at a scale unheard of in the history" of India.

    Under the Modi government, Mr Shah said, honest taxpayers, a majority of whom belonged to the middle class, felt they were valued following crackdowns against black money and corruption through various measures, including demonetisation and the benami law.

    Opposition parties had sharpened their criticism of the government's claims about demonetisation after the RBI said over 99 per cent old notes were deposited in banks but the BJP insisted it had increased transparency and expanded the formal economy.

    Targeting the Modi's critics, he said the prime minister had ruffled several feathers by his action against the corrupt and status quo- "after all, years of privilege of a select few are now over and the poor are now getting their due".


  • 17:00 (IST)

    Amreli has played a huge role in Indian freedom struggle, says Modi

    "In 2022, it will be 75 years of Indian independence. Amreli has played a huge role in the freedom struggle of India," said Narendra Modi in Amreli, Gujarat, reported The Indian Express.

  • 16:56 (IST)

    Visuals of Narendra Modi inaugurating Amar Dairy plants in Amreli, Gujarat

  • 16:50 (IST)

    Narendra Modi addressing the rally in Amreli on Sunday evening

    Image courtesy: PTI

  • 16:46 (IST)

    Narendra Modi inaugurating the APMC market yard earlier in Amreli

  • 16:37 (IST)

    Visuals of Narendra Modi as he arrived at Amreli, Gujarat

  • 16:34 (IST)

    Modi says BJP-led Centre is pro-farmer

  • 16:31 (IST)

    Narendra Modi encourages farmers to explore opportunities in timber

  • 16:27 (IST)

    Formulating new policies to urge people to join Navy

    “We are formulating policies to encourage people to join Navy and serve the country,” Modi said addressing the rally in Amreli, reported The Indian Express.

  • 16:25 (IST)

    E-Nam Yojana giving farmers better market access, says Narendra Modi 

  • 16:22 (IST)

    Blue Revolution, Sweet Revolution have potential to change lives

  • 16:21 (IST)

    Modi bats for a 'sweet revolution' with honey

    Narendra Modi said that along with White Revolution and Gujarat's dairy network, farmers must be encouraged to produce honey calling for a "madhu kranti" (Sweet Revolution).

  • 16:15 (IST)

    Modi says as chief minister, he heralded advent of dairies in Gujarat

  • 16:11 (IST)

    Positive changes in cooperative sector, says Narendra Modi

  • 16:06 (IST)

    Narendra Modi begins addressing gathering in Amreli

  • 16:04 (IST)

    Narendra Modi inaugurates Amar Dairy plant, College of Diary Science in Amreli

  • 16:02 (IST)

    'Never indulged in politicking over Narmada dam,' said Modi earlier 

    Narendra Modi said he had never indulged into politicking over the Narmada dam since it satiates the thirst of "lakhs of mothers, who used to trek kilometres, tribals who had to migrate far away, jawans at the borders in parched regions, mute cattle who had strut hundreds of kilometers for water and poor farmers".


  • 15:58 (IST)

    Modi's schedule in Amreli

    Narendra Modi will be inaugurating Amar Dairy plants and laying the foundation stone for a honey production centre, apart from the ongoing address at the Sahukar Sammelan in Amreli, reported The Indian Express.

  • 15:52 (IST)

    Narendra Modi about to address a Sahakar Sammelan in Amreli

  • 15:46 (IST)

    Modi expects Sardar Sarovar dam to boost tourism in region

    Modi said that in addition to helping ease the water crisis in the region, the dam is also expected to boost tourism. "With water sports and adventure sports, we will make this spot a recreational hub which will not only help the local community with employment, but will also attract tourists from across the country and outside," he said.

    Read more here

  • 15:39 (IST)

    Modi inaugurates APMC yard in Amreli

    Narendra Modi inaugurated a new APMC market yard in Amreli, according to India Today.

  • 15:36 (IST)

    Narendra Modi condoles IAF Marshal Arjan Singh's demise

    "He was a brave soldier of our country. He was a hero of the 1965 war," Modi said in Gujarat's Kevadia, where he dedicated the Sardar Sarovar Dam to the nation," said Modi.

    "Even at the age of 98, he would be dressed in uniform. He would come on a wheelchair but whenever he would see me, he would stand," he added.

    "I requested him not to stand but he was a soldier, he never forgot his discipline," Modi said.

    Modi said that the Marshal's spirit was the same when he met him on Saturday at the Army's Research and Referral Hospital where he was admitted following a cardiac arrest.

    "We have lost a brave soldier. I pay my tributes to him. The nation will always remember his bravery and generations to come will be inspired by him," he added.


  • 15:20 (IST)

    Sardar Sarovar will help tourism too, says Modi

    Narendra Modi said that in addition to helping ease the water crisis in the region, the dam is also expected to boost tourism. "With water sports and adventure sports, we will make this spot a recreational hub which will not only help the local community with employment, but will also attract tourists from across the country and outside," he said.

  • 15:18 (IST)

    Narendra Modi says no other project has faced so many hurdles

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday inaugurated the Sardar Sarovar Dam on the Narmada river, saying no other project in the world has faced so many hurdles as this "engineering miracle" which many people had "conspired to stop".

    "No other project in the world has faced such hurdles as the Sardar Sarovar Dam on the Narmada river. But we were determined to complete the project," Modi said.

  • 15:13 (IST)

    Vadodara-Dabhoi road jammed

    The Indian Express is reporting that the Vadodara-Dabhoi road was jammed with GSRTC buses and vehicles that were departing from Narendra Modi’s rally.

  • 15:10 (IST)

    After Dabhoi, Modi to visit Amreli

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Amreli in Saurashtra where he will attend a host of programmes and address a public gathering.


  • 15:02 (IST)

    Sardar Sarovar dam second largest dam in world

    It is the second largest dam after the Grand Coulee Dam in the United States.

    Read more here

  • 15:00 (IST)

    Western India lacks water; working to overcome these shortages: Modi

  • 14:57 (IST)

    BJP leaders describe dam as 'Gujarat's lifeline' 

    The dam on the river Narmada has been described as 'Gujarat's lifeline' by the BJP leaders, as it aims to provide drinking water to 131 urban centres and 9,633 villages (53 per cent of total 18,144 villages of Gujarat) and irrigation facilities for 18.54 hectares of land covering 3,112 villages under 73 talukas in 15 districts.


  • 14:55 (IST)

    Amit Shah compares Modi to Sardar Patel, BR Amberdkar

    BJP president Amit Shah on Sunday bracketed Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Sardar Patel and BR Ambedkar and said Modi had started India's economic integration after Patel and Ambedkar respectively achieved the country's territorial and social unification.


  • 14:51 (IST)

    Modi dedicates dam to country on his birthday

    He said he was delighted to dedicate the dam to the nation on his birthday and thanked the chief ministers of Madhya Pradesh, Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Maharashtra's Devendra Fadnavis and Rajasthan's Vasundhara Raje Scindia.


  • 14:43 (IST)

    Modi says project will help take water from dam to India-Pakistan border in Gujarat

    Noting that shortage of water was a major factor in slowing the pace of development, Modi said the project will also help take water from the dam to the India-Pakistan border in Gujarat to fulfil the water needs of BSF soldiers, besides benefitting states like Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Maharashtra.


  • 14:40 (IST)

    Modi calls Sardar Sarovar dam an 'engineering marvel'

    Modi said the construction of the dam was an engineering marvel and every engineering student should study it.


  • 14:38 (IST)

    Narendra Modi visits construction site of statue dedicated to Sardar Patel

  • 14:32 (IST)

    Modi pays tribute to tribal freedom fighters

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone for the National Tribal Freedom Fighters' Museum during an event. 

  • 14:26 (IST)

    Medha Patkar calls development 'unfortunate' takes on BJP

    Patkar has alleged that the affected families have not been rehabilitated or paid compensation despite the Supreme Court order. Describing the development as "unfortunate", she has demanded that water supply in the dam be stopped till the rehabilitation was completed. 

    Taking on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Patkar said the lives of thousands of families in Madhya Pradesh have been put at stake for electoral gains in the coming Gujarat assembly polls.


  • 14:22 (IST)

    World Bank refused to provide loan, says PM

    "The World Bank refused to give loan for the project raising environmental concerns, but we completed it on our own," Modi told the gathering at Dabhoi. 


  • 14:20 (IST)

    Modi also visited the Statue of Unity site

  • 14:18 (IST)

    Patkar's 'Jal Satyagraha' for Narmada families enters third day

    The "Jal Satyagraha" protest led by Narmada Bachao Aandolan founder Medha Patkar, demanding rehabilitation of the 40,000 families affected by the Sardar Sarovar Dam, entered the third day on Sunday.

    With the water level of the dam steadily rising, it is speculated that one town and 192 villages in the region will be submerged under water. Around 40,000 families in the affected villages would have to leave their homes as the danger escalates.


  • 14:08 (IST)

    Modi hits out at his opponents​
    A massive misinformation campaign was launched against the Sardar Sarovar Dam project, which is an engineering miracle, says Narendra Modi.

  • 14:05 (IST)

    Modi invokes Sardar Patel, Ambedkar during speech

  • 14:03 (IST)

    Modi tweets image of Narmada Sarovar Dam

  • 14:00 (IST)

    Modi's dig at detractors?

    "No other project in the world has faced such hurdles as the Sardar Sarovar Dam on Narmada," Narendra Modi told the gathering. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will spend his 67th birthday in his native Gujarat on Sunday and dedicate the Sardar Sarovar Dam to the nation, amid protests and allegations of little work done on it, and to address two rallies, landed in Gandhinagar on Saturday.

Modi was received by Governor OP Kohli and Chief Minister Vijay Rupani at the Ahmedabad airport, drove straight to state capital Gandhinagar where he will put up for the night.

Official sources said he would begin his Sunday early by first calling on his mother Heeraba Modi, a tradition he has been following over the years.

The Prime Minister will visit two of his favourite projects on his birthday the Sardar Sarovar Dam Project and the Statue of Unity being built in the memory of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.

While a 182-metre Statue of Unity is a project conceived by Modi, he has also been consistently in favour of increasing the height of the Sardar Sarovar Dam.

The height of the dam was recently raised to 138.68 metres.

An official release said the increase in the dam height will facilitate a usable storage of 4.73 Million Acre Feet (MAF) and will greatly benefit the participating states of Gujarat, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.

 Narendra Modi in Gujarat as it happened: PM inaugurates Sardar Sarovar dam, says BJP-led Centre sensitive to needs of farmers

File image of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Reuters

It said that the project has helped transport the waters of the Narmada river to the water-deficient areas of Gujarat through an elaborate canal and pipeline network.

"Irrigation from the project is expected to benefit about 10 lakh farmers and drinking water to be supplied to various villages and towns is likely to benefit up to 4 crore people," the release said.

The project has been described as one of the biggest human endeavours for water transport. Up to a billion units of hydropower are also expected to be generated annually.

From the dam site, the Prime Minister will travel to Sadhu Bet, where the Statue of Unity, an iconic statue and associated memorial complex for Sardar Patel, is currently under construction.

"The prime minister will be given an overview of the progress of work on this project. The project comprises a 182 metre tall statue, an exhibition hall, a memorial garden, and a Visitor Centre," the Prime Minister's Office said.

Modi will attend the closing ceremony of the Narmada Mahotsav and address the gathering at Dabhoi. The closing ceremony is also of a Narmada yatra taken out by the ruling BJP as part of the Mahotsav through 85 chariots that went around the state and would reach the dam site.

At several places on its route, the yatra faced hostile crowds protesting against the claims of the state government of providing Narmada dam waters across the parched regions of Gujarat.

Simultaneously, the opposition Congress has mocked the prime minister dedicating to the nation something, a major part of which was completed by the party during its rule before 1995. State Congress president Bharatsinh Solanki and a national spokesperson Shaktisinh Gohil asserted that "90 per cent of the mail canal of the dam and 88 metres were completed by the Congress between 1987 and 1995".

"In as many as 22 years of the BJP's rule, not even half of the work on creating minor and sub-minor canal network has been completed. You can see the water in the dam but it does not reach most of the farmers in the absence of a canal network. And the Prime Minister is adedicating it to the nation'," said Gohil.

Meanwhile, Modi will lay the foundation stone for the National Tribal Freedom Fighters' Museum during the event.

The prime minister will later visit Amreli, where he will inaugurate a new market yard of APMC. He will also inaugurate new plants of Amar Dairy, and lay the foundation stone of a honey production centre. He will address a gathering.


With inputs from IANS

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Updated Date: Sep 17, 2017 18:00:14 IST

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