Metro network, an upcoming highway to Pandharpur, improved trains, better air connectivity — Prime Minister Narendra Modi assured the people of Pune, and Maharashtra in general, that they could expect much better times in the future.
Speaking at a rally on the S P College grounds on Thursday, Modi said the government’s plan to invest Rs 100 lakh crore for national infrastructure over the next five years would benefit cities like Pune.
“Connectivity is a big issue in many cities, including Pune, in the country. We are able to see the outcome of the pace with which work has been done in the last five years. The development of a new Palki highway from Pune to Pandharpur is being done and other more highways would ease the connectivity to the city,” he said.
“Also, the Metro network is spreading fast in the city. There would be a big relief in traffic situation due to metro rail. There has been tremendous improvement witnessed in railway service in the last five years. From security to cleanliness to speed… efforts have been taken on all fronts. New special trains have been started in various parts of the country and it will also be started here soon. Pune city and Maharashtra state will benefit from it,” said Modi.
Air connectivity has also improved tremendously in the last five years, said the Prime Minister, adding that the Udaan scheme has ensured the beginning of air services in nine towns in Maharashtra. “I am happy that one wearing hawai chappal (floaters) is now also able to take hawai yatra (air travel),” he said.
Modi said his government was also focusing on building a robust digital infrastructure. “This country is going to be a global power in digital infrastructure. We are already strong in data and the work started for strengthening digital infrastructure would further strengthen our position,” he said. He appealed to the youth to continue to repose their confidence in the BJP. “I urge the youth to not to follow those who are spreading a feeling of hopelessness. I assure that the coming years would be full of hope. The government will take favourable decisions for encouraging investment in the country,” said Modi.
“The government will achieve the target of becoming a five trillion dollar economy with clear policy and good infrastructure. There are many who find it difficult to accept this. They look at the numbers and say this is not possible. But I look at the track record of my government and the efforts of 130 crore people of this country. It took the Indian economy about 60 years to touch the one trillion dollar mark, and another eight years to reach the two trillion dollar mark. In the last five years of our government, we have added nearly one trillion dollars to our economy, and that has given us the confidence to set higher goals for ourselves. The bigger our economy, the faster we can eradicate poverty,” said Modi.
He said the world was changing fast and there were rapid changes in international relations and economics world over. “There was a need for a confident and strong government for the country to face the rapidly-changing world scenario and the citizens of the country have given us that mandate in the Lok Sabha elections,” said the Prime Minister.
“When world leaders, however big and powerful, shake hands with me, they realise that they are not just shaking hands with Modi, they are shaking hands with 130 crore Indians. That’s what a strong mandate from you has ensured,” he said.
The Prime Minister also appealed to voters not to go on a vacation on voting day and instead, come out in large numbers and vote. In the Lok Sabha elections earlier this year, Pune had registered a turnout of well below 50 per cent, one of the lowest in the state.