Balrampur (UP), Dec 11 (PTI):
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday exhorted farmers to adopt natural farming saying it will help not only save water but also produce better crops, and invited them to join a mega programme on it on December 16 as it would prove beneficial for them.
He was addressing a rally in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh’s Balrampur after inaugurating the Saryu Canal National Project, which will provide assured water for irrigation to over 14 lakh hectares of land and benefit about 29 lakh farmers. Modi said a big event on natural farming is being organised on December 16 and requested farmers across the country to connect either through TV or Krishi Vigyan Kendras. Noting that one Subhash ji of Maharashtra has initiated the idea of zero budget natural farming, he said it saves earth and water and the crop produced through it is also better.
The prime minister also took a jibe at Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav who has often claimed that the works of his government are being projected as the achievements of the BJP government, saying that he was waiting if anyone will claim the credit for the Saryu Canal National Project.
“When I started from Delhi, I was waiting for someone to say that he had cut the ribbon of this project and started this scheme.
This is the habit of some people, maybe in their childhood they had cut its ribbon,” he said, without taking any names.
“For some people cutting ribbon is the priority while for us completing schemes in time is the priority. In 2014 when I came to power, I was amazed to see that 99 irrigation projects were lying (incomplete) for decades in the country,” he said.
Speaking about the unnecessary delay in the Saryu Canal National Project, the prime minister said, “Most painful is the waste and misuse of the country’s money, time and resources and its humiliation. This thinking is the biggest hurdle in the balanced development of the country and this thinking has also stalled the Saryu Nahar project.”
All the citizens of the country should understand that when the work on this project was started its cost was under Rs 100 crore and now it is about Rs 10,000 crore. “This money was your hard-earned money,” he told the gathering.
“Every single rupee of your hard-earned money should have been properly used in time. Those who didn’t do this aren’t they your ‘gunehgar’ (sinner)? Will you not punish them? The country has to pay 100 times more the price due to the laxity of previous governments,” he said.
Paying tributes to Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat who died in a helicopter crash in Tamil Nadu along with his wife and 11 other personnel, Modi said his demise is a great loss to the nation.
“The death of India’s first Chief of Defence Staff is a huge loss for every patriot of the country. The entire country witnessed General Rawat’s efforts in making the forces ‘atmanirbhar’ (self-reliant),” he said and prayed for early recovery of the lone survivor of the helicopter crash, IAF Group Captain Varun Singh who was born in Deoria in Uttar Pradesh.
“Even while bearing this pain, the country will not pause, we will work harder to face the challenges from both inside and outside the country,” the prime minister said.
In the beginning of his speech, Modi referred to Yogi Adityanath as an energetic, dedicated and popular chief minister, and said that previous governments used to protect mafia, but now the Yogi government is carrying out a campaign to clear the state of mafia and people are saying “farq saaf hai” (difference is clear).
“Daughters of UP used to think twice before moving out of their homes earlier. Now criminals think twice before committing a crime, earlier daughters used to sit in homes but now the criminals are sitting inside jails in fear,” he said.
Referring to Balrampur electing former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee twice to the Lok Sabha, Modi said, “The people of Balrampur are so ‘paarkhi’ (intelligent) that they had ‘garha and savara’ (moulded) two Bharat Ratnas — Nanaji Deshmukh and Atal Bihari Vajpayee.”
The project inaugurated in Balrampur is in the series of developmental works launched by the BJP government in Purvanchal that accounts for nearly 160 assembly seats out of a total of 403 in Uttar Pradesh that goes to polls early next year.