Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said people of Odisha have already made up their mind for a big change in the coming elections as the development process has been hit in the State due to corruption and widespread of a PC (percentage) culture.
He, instead, assured that his Government is fully committed to an overall development of Odisha and would make it as an engine of development vehicle of new India.
The Prime Minister stated this while addressing a public meeting, named "Swabhiman Samabesh" at the Goshala ground at the foot of Barunei hill at Khordha in the afternoon.
Initiating his speech in Odia, he chanted 'Jai Jagannath' and said he is proud of attending a meeting at a place (Barunei hill) where Paikas had for rights of Odia people years back.
He put many questions on developmental aspects of Odisha. "Why Odisha is still lagging behind in sanitation? Why youths of Odisha are migrating from the State? Why women and children are dying of malnutrition? Why hospitals don't have sufficient doctors? Why farmers here are still crying over irrigation facilities? Why farmers are resorting to distress sale? Why major parts of Odisha still don't have access to drinking water? Why teachers are taking to streets to get their salaries? Who are promoters of PC culture? Who are nursing chit fund demons? If these questions are answered honestly, development in Odisha could happen in a more transparent manner," said Modi.
Reminding the ruling BJD in the State of its poll promises, Modi said the regional party had promised to provide irrigation in 10 lakh hectare of land, but only 22,000 hectares of land have been irrigated. Besides one-third blocks in the State lack irrigation even though five major rivers flow through Odisha, he pointed out.
He said the Centre has implemented the Swaminathan Committee Report, which the Congress failed to do during its reign, and increased the minimum support price (MSP) of 22 different crops, including paddy.
He also alleged that the State Government is not adopting the Centre's universal health coverage scheme, Ayushman Bharat stating that lakhs of people staying outside Odisha could have benefited. "Why not a single person from Odisha didn't get benefit from Aushman Bharat while over six lakh people have already benefitted," he said.
"But the BJP is focusing on a four-prong growth strategy with emphasis on development of people, farmers, women and entrepreneurs. While the BJP's efforts are on, things can be turned around only with the help of people. This huge gathering here is a testament to what people want and I am seeing the future of Odisha," said Modi.
He said the Centre has already sanctioned for five medical colleges in the State. The ESI Hospital was upgradaded. His Government has made a provision of Rs 4,000 crore for developing waterway transportation. Odisha would benefit as it has many rivers.
"For the development of infrastructure and connectivity in urban and rural areas of Odisha, expenditure by the Centre has increased five times. New
highways, new railway tracks and new airports are being constructed in the State with pace. All-round development of Odisha, its villages, youths, women and farmers is our sole aim," Modi said.