In an apparent dig at the erstwhile Congress-led governments, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said most policies had been made in the past keeping the ballot box in mind and not for development or alleviation of poverty.
“Our government has been working for the uplift of the poverty-stricken people… through ‘jan bhagidari’ (people’s participation). Many policies had been made keeping in mind the ballot box and not the real interests of the vast majority of the poor people of our country,” he said at a public meeting.
He also launched the ‘PM Ujjwala Yojana’ scheme which aims at providing 5 crore free cooking (LPG) connections to below-poverty-line families over the next three years.
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“Uttar Pradesh has given so many Prime Ministers. But why did the poverty levels go on increasing? Were there some drawbacks in these policies?” he asked.
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He said an MP from Ghazipur in UP when Jawaharlal Nehru was the Prime Minister had raised the issue of abject poverty in eastern UP following which a commission was formed which made several major recommendations.
“What happened to those recommendations, only God knows. Fifty years have passed since then. One of the recommendations was to connect Ghazipur and Mau by rail. We have now decided to construct a rail line to implement that recommendation,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister also spoke on the significance of May Day today and said the new ‘Mantra’ should be — “Labourers, unite the world” as against “Workers of the World, Unite”, the slogan which used to be raised earlier.
“The situation has changed. The biggest cementing factor is the sweat of the workers who can unite the world,” he said, noting that those who used to raise slogans of uniting the workers have been “losing ground the world over”.