Ranchi: Minister for Road Transport and Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said that the last three years have been important for the country with regard to development under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Addressing a public meeting in Raipur as part of the 'Modi Fest' here, Gadkari said that since 1947 the Congress had ruled for 75 to 80 per cent, be it in the states, Centre or in the districts, and had always raised the slogan of 'Garibi hatao' (poverty alleviation).
"But poverty could not be eradicated, the unemployed could not get jobs and the country could not develop", Gadkari said adding that, the poor only became poorer.
The special thing under the Narendra Modi government is how to eradicate poverty; how to give the poor some relief, and "I feel happy to inform you" that only 3.5 crore people had bank accounts since Independence, but under the Jan Dhan Yojana, it has risen by ten times with 29 crore people now having bank accounts — 60 per cent in the villages and 40 per cent in urban areas, Gadkari added.
"Not only the poor opened accounts in banks, but deposited Rs 64,164 crore", the Minister said.
Referring to the Make in India initiative, innovation, entrepreneurship, technology, research, use of science and technology, Gadkari said the government has laid emphasis on skill development.
Speaking about other schemes introduced by the Centre, he described irrigation as the most important one and said that Jharkhand has the least irrigation facility in the country as the earlier governments did not pay attention to it.
"I feel happy that the Centre has made a provision — Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sichai Yojana — to augment irrigation facilities", Gadkari said.
Speaking on roads, the Minister said his department has doubled the NH roads from 96,000 km to 2,00,000 km and during the UPA regime, road construction which was only 2 km per day, is now 23 km per day.
"By March, 16,800 km road contract has been given. When I went to London, World Bank officials said no other country has done it. They said it is a record", Gadkari said.
Gadkari added, "India will grow, people have belief in the BJP government. So, we are getting people's support in every election".
Updated Date: Jun 09, 2017 10:01 AM