September 19, 2021 4:10:31 am
Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Saturday accused opposition Congress of using people from tribal communities only as a vote bank without doing anything for their well-being.
“Their (Congress’s) intention was to divide tribal votes by fielding different parties and candidates, but the BJP is committed to their development whenever it gets the mandate,” Shah said.
In Madhya Pradesh’s Jabalpur for a day to take part in the ‘Amrut Mahotsav’ to honour tribal leaders who had participated in the freedom struggle, Shah pointed out that before the Narendra Modi government came in in 2014, Rs 4,200 was allocated for tribals in the Union Budget of 2013. This amount, he said, has been doubled to 7,900 crore in 2021-22 Budget.
The budget component for tribal development under various ministries, he said, is Rs 71,900 crore in 2021-22 — up from Rs 21,500 crore in 2013-14.
Recalling Gondwana rulers Shankar Shah and his son Raghunath Shah, who were killed by the British during the Revolt of 1857, Shah said freedom fighters who were forgotten by historians will be the highlight of the ‘Azadi kaa Amrut Mahostav’ event, on the occasion of 75 years of Independence. “We will always be inspired by the sacrifice of (the likes of) Raja Shankar Shah and Raghunath Shah. Many tribal leaders sacrificed (their lives) from 1857 until India attained freedom in 1947. Their sacrifices will be remembered by future generations,” he said.
Raja Shankar Shah and Raghunath, successors of Rani Durgavati, the queen of Gond empire that spread across Central India in the 16th and 17th centuries, were tried for treason by the British and killed after being tied to a cannon once their plot to attack Chhavani and their attempts to fuel a revolt against the British empire was found out. Their death is said to have fuelled the Revolt of 1857 in Central India.
Pointing out that these tribal warriors fought against the Mughals, and then the British, Shah said the Centre has decided to set up nine museums in their honour in Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Kerala, Manipur and Mizoram at a cost of Rs 200 crore. Of this, Rs 110 crore has been spent so far, he added.
Speaking at the event, Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan announced home delivery of PDS ration in all 89 tribal blocks of the state and implementation of Panchayat Extension to Schedule Areas Act, 1996, which empowers panchayats to formulate and implement development schemes for their respective regions.
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