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Welfare of tribal communities is government’s foremost priority, says PM Modi

The Prime Minister said that the country has seen two types of politics regarding tribal interests and the welfare of tribal communities.


 Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday laid the foundation stone of multiple development initiatives worth over Rs. 1970 crore in Vyara, Tapi.
The projects include the improvement of the road from Saputara to the Statue of Unity along with the construction of missing links, and water supply projects worth over Rs 300 crore in Tapi and Narmada districts. Acknowledging the enthusiasm and affection of the people present on the occasion, the Prime Minister said that he felt blessed to be a recipient of their affection for two decades.

“You all have come here from far and wide. Seeing your energy, your enthusiasm, the mind becomes happy and my energy levels get a boost. I am trying to repay this debt by working for your development wholeheartedly. Even today, the foundation stone of projects worth hundreds of crores of rupees related to the development of this entire tribal area, including Tapi and Narmada, has been laid,” he said.

The Prime Minister said that the country has seen two types of politics regarding tribal interests and the welfare of tribal communities.

He said on the one hand, there are parties which do not care for tribal interests and have a history of making false promises to the tribals while on the other hand there is a party like BJP, which always gave top priority to tribal welfare.
“While earlier governments made fun of tribal traditions, we on the other hand respect the tribal traditions. Welfare of tribal communities is our foremost priority and wherever we have formed the government, we have given top priority to tribal welfare,” he said.

“My tribal brothers and sisters should have their own pucca house with electricity, gas connection, toilet, a road leading to the house, a medical centre nearby, means of income in the vicinity, and a school for children,” he added.
Noting that Gujarat has seen unprecedented development, the Prime Minister said every village in the state has 24 hours electricity today, but the first place where every village was connected with an electricity facility was the tribal district of Dang.

“About a decade and a half ago, under Jyotirgram Yojana, the target of 100 percent electrification was achieved in more than 300 villages of Dang district. This inspiration from Dang district led us to undertake electrification of all villages in the country when you sent me to Delhi as Prime Minister,” he said.
He also talked about the changed water situation in Gujarat.

He informed that the Ukai scheme is being built with an investment of hundreds of crores of rupees and the projects for which the foundation stone has been laid will further improve the water facility. “There was a time when only a quarter of the households in Gujarat had a water connection. Today 100 per cent households in Gujarat have piped drinking water”, the Prime Minister said.

Throwing light on Vanbandhu Kalyan Yojana, the Prime Minister informed that it was conceived and implemented to fulfil every basic need and aspiration of the tribal society in Gujarat.

“Today we are seeing that many daughters from Tapi and other adjoining tribal districts are going to school and college here. Now many sons and daughters of tribal society are studying science, becoming doctors and engineers,” he said.

The Prime Minister informed that under the Mission School of Excellence which was inaugurated yesterday in Gujarat, about 4,000 schools in tribal talukas will be modernised.

He said in the last two decades more than 10 thousand schools have been built in tribal areas, Eklavya Model School and special residential schools for daughters have been set up.

The Prime Minister said that the Gujarat government has spent more than one lakh crore rupees on Vanbandhu Kalyan Yojana.

Now in the second phase of this scheme, the Gujarat government is again going to spend more than one lakh crore rupees, he informed.

With this, many new schools for tribal children, many hostels, new medical colleges, and nursing colleges will also be built. “Under this scheme, the government is also preparing to build more than 2.5 lakh houses for the tribals. In the last few years, more than 6 lakh houses and land leases have been given to about one lakh tribal families in tribal areas”, he said.

“Our resolve”, the Prime Minister said, “is to make the tribal society completely free from problems of malnutrition”.

“That’s why the central government has started a huge ‘Poshan Abhiyan’ through which thousands of rupees are being given to help mothers eat nutritious food during pregnancy.”

A huge campaign is going on under Mission Indradhanush to ensure that mothers and children get vaccinated on time, he said

Highlighting the efforts of the government in restoring the forgotten legacy of the tribal community in the history of India’s freedom movement, the Prime Minister remarked that the tribal community has a very rich legacy.