* A mobile application to upload photographs of toilets constructed after October 2, 2014 is being developed.
* A Swachh Bharat WhatsApp group has been created comprising officials of the Centre; similar ones have been formed in states.
* Real-time online monitoring of 3,206 industrial units in 17 critically polluting sectors has been made mandatory.
* A new Kisan TV channel is in the works.
* The electronic media monitoring centre has been strengthened and an agency to monitor 1,500 TV channels is likely to be created by 2017.
These points are part of the compendium being prepared by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry to mark the NDA government’s completion of one year in office.
The compendium has been tentatively titled SAMVAD, an acronym for ‘Self assessment of Modi government on various deliverables’.
Detailing the government’s achievements in a chapter-wise format, the voluminous compendium makes a mention of flagship initiatives such as the PM Jan Dhan Yojana alongside “30 innovative press conferences organised by the PIB”.
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The highlights include over 30 chapters under broad titles such as rebuilding economy, skill India, revival of the energy sector, digital India, shramev jayate, healthy India, transparent and corruption free governance, shipping, focus on Northeast, connecting people, empowering the common man, “much-acclaimed” foreign policy: special focus on South Asia, and agriculture and rural development. The compendium claims to showcase the work done by the government so far with the help of charts, graphs and a host of “voices from the fields”.
The “voices” have been highlighted in boxes to show the impact of the initiatives. For example, one such story pertains to a 55-year-old, Rajaram, of Gulabipur village, Madhya Pradesh, who benefited from the Swachh Bharat Mission that was launched on October 2 last year.
Also read: Fifth Column: Modi’s first year in office
When contacted about the SAMVAD initiative, a government spokesperson said, “We have collected information from all ministries and a catalogue enlisting milestones is being prepared. We are aiming for an evidence-based approach and being realistic about what all has been achieved so far. This whole initiative is being coordinated by secretary, I&B. Plan of action for all media units is being prepared by the I&B.”
Earlier, the I&B Ministry had asked all government ministries to focus on the “common man” and prepare a list of “quantifiable” benefits that have been provided to various sections of the society. It had also sent teams across the country to talk to people and “concentrate on success stories and report them in either bullet points or between 300-600 words”.
Doordarshan has been tasked with streaming special programmes on farmers, youth and the poor based on their success stories. The document is an attempt by the NDA government — under fire for its alleged anti-farmer Land Acquisition Bill amid rising cases of farmer suicides, its alleged divergence from the growth agenda and controversial remarks by some of its MPs — to put forth its “pro-poor, pro-farmer” face to the people.
For instance, the compendium talks about initiatives in skill development such as the National Mission on Skill Development and a skill development university, along with the proposal for Wi-Fi connectivity in Utkal University, Pune University, North-Eastern Hill University and Osmania University. The IT ministry has detailed the efforts taken to promote e-governance and encourage replication of successful eGov practices. The BPO operations started in the Northeast region have also found a mention in the document.
Modi sanctions Rs 3.36 cr works under MPLADS
Lucknow: Installation of 22 handpumps, construction and broadening of 22 roads, five works of electrification, construction of drains and sewerage in two localities and extra chairs at Varanasi and Kashi railway stations are the main projects sanctioned from the first installment of Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme fund of PM Narendra Modi.
As many as 53 works in different areas of Rohaniya, Sevapuri, Cantonment, North City and South City assembly segments worth Rs 3.36 crore have been sanctioned, according to an RTI reply from the district rural development agency, Varanasi, through an RTI query. As much as Rs 2 52 crore have been released for these works. – ENS