Narendra Modi in Varanasi: PM inaugurates Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, makes 'New India' pitch, lauds govt for curbing corruption

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday inaugurated the 15th Pravasi Bharat Divas in Varanasi. Reiterating the 'New India' pitch, the prime minister said the Indian diaspora was the "ambassador" for the country. He also said that a centralised system for passports and an e-passport platform was also being worked towards the BJP-led government.

Modi said, "Our embassies and consulates across the world are being connected with Passport Sewa Project. It will prepare a centralised system for passport related services for all. Now taking a step forward, work is on to issue chip-based e-passports."

Narendra Modi in Varanasi: PM inaugurates Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, makes New India pitch, lauds govt for curbing corruption

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Varanasi. ANI

He also said that the contribution of non-residing Indians (NRIs) was important in the development of the country. "Not only are you all India's brand ambassadors abroad, but also its representatives," he said, adding that India has taken a big step in making an impression on a global level. Modi added, "People of Indian origin are in leadership roles in countries such as Mauritius, Portugal and Ireland."

The prime minister also highlighted the government schemes introduced during its tenure. Lauding the success of the "largest healthcare scheme in the world", Ayushman Bharat, Modi said that the government had also worked towards "effectively" reducing corruption in the country.

He also slammed the previous governments over charges of corruption and said that the government's efforts to tackle corruption were "just a glimpse" of the "change" that has taken place in the last "four and a half years".

Modi alluded to former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi's comment that only 15 paise of Re 1 reached the masses, and accused the past Congress governments of "doing nothing" to stop leakage.

Modi said that at least seven crore "fake" people had been cut from government schemes. "In the last four and a half years, our government has removed seven crore fake people from lists of schemes. These people never existed, but there were documents. Government schemes were being used through these documents," he said.

"Our government has given around Rs five lakh and 78,000 crore directly to the people under various schemes. Using technology, we have devised a way to eradicate corruption 100 percent. The funds get transferred directly into the peoples' bank accounts," he said.

With inputs from agencies

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Updated Date: Jan 22, 2019 12:54:59 IST

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