I am deeply touched by your extraordinary hospitality and warmth.
I regret that this is a very short visit. I would have loved to stay longer. Anyone who visits this wonderful country will find it hard to leave.
Short it may be, but this visit has been very productive.
It is no surprise that Seychelles is my first destination in the Indian Ocean Region.
We regard Seychelles as a vital partner in our Indian Ocean neighbourhood.
Our relationship is unique and special. It is founded on deep sense of mutual trust and confidence. It is marked by a spirit of respect and equality; and enormous goodwill and warmth.
It draws strength from our shared values of democracy and inclusiveness. It is nurtured by a common purpose - progress of our people and peace and prosperity in the Indian Ocean Region.
Seychelles has made impressive progress. It has shown that size is no barrier to the scale of achievements.
This visit and my conversation with President Michel have reinforced my conviction in the strength and the importance of this relationship.
Our security partnership is strong. It has enabled us to fulfill our shared responsibility to advance maritime security in the region.
It is a privilege to be a partner of Seychelles in the development of its security capabilities.
Today, I am pleased to announce that we will be giving one more Dornier aircraft to Seychelles.
Later today, I will have the honour to launch the Coastal Surveillance Radar Project. This is another symbol of our cooperation.
These steps will enable Seychelles to secure these beautiful islands and the vast expanse of waters around them. Seychelles will also continue to make an enormous contribution to the safety and security of the Indian Ocean Region.
Our agreement today on hydrographic survey adds a new dimension to our maritime cooperation. I thank Seychelles for their confidence in India.
We also hope that Seychelles will soon be a full partner in the maritime security cooperation between India, Maldives and Sri Lanka.
President Michel and I also underlined the importance of comprehensive cooperation in the Indian Ocean Region. We expressed support for a more active and productive Indian Ocean Rim Association.
Our development partnership is also a strong pillar of our relations.
Our agreement today on the development of infrastructure in the Assumption Island gives a strong boost to this partnership.
We are pleased to be a partner in development of human resources and capacity building in Seychelles. Indeed, Seychelles is one of the largest recipients of Indian assistance in this area. We intend to expand this further in the future.
Seychelles is a leader in advancing the concept of Blue Economy. We also believe that the Ocean Economy is indispensable to meeting our future challenges.
Today, President Michel and I have agreed to establish a Joint Working Group to expand our cooperation on the blue economy.
This cooperation will increase our understanding of marine ecology and resources. We will improve our ability to harness new possibilities of the ocean in a sustainable and balanced manner.
This is a major step in advancing our scientific and economic cooperation.
We stressed our support for expansion in our modest trade and investment relations. We are confident that we can achieve it, especially as Seychelles looks to a future in which information technology and services play an increasingly important role.
I also expressed hope that Seychelles would be able to quickly utilize the committed 75 million dollars in grants and credit in accordance with its priorities.
We deeply value the close and warm ties between our people. I welcomed the launch of direct air services to India by Air Seychelles last December.
We have decided to grant free visas for three months to the citizens of Seychelles. We will also extend to you the facility of visa-on-arrival.
I thanked President Michel for his Government`s consistent support to India in international forums. This includes the endorsement for India`s permanent membership of the United Nations Security Council.
We had strong convergence of views on climate change. We are two nations that are vulnerable to its impact. And, we are deeply committed to combating it.
We stressed our shared commitment to strong national action. We also called for a strong and ambitious global effort, especially from the developed world, on climate change.
I reiterated our consistent support to the position of the Small Island Developing States. Equally, I renewed India`s strong commitment to our partnership with Africa.
Our relationship is a powerful example of warm friendship and productive partnership. For India, this relationship means a lot.
This visit has reinforced the special warmth in our ties and taken our strategic partnership to a new level. I am grateful to President Michel and the people of Seychelles for this.
I look forward to the visit of President Michel to India at the earliest.
Swayampurna Goa is the result of new team spirit of Team Goa: PM Modi
October 23, 2021
“Apart from Nature and pleasure, Goa also signifies a new model of development, reflection of collective efforts and solidarity for development from Panchayat to Administration”
“Goa has achieved 100% in all major schemes such as ODF, electricity, piped water, ration to poor”
“ Swayampurna Goa is the result of new team spirit of Team Goa”
“Infrastructure being developed in Goa will also help in increasing the income of farmers, livestock farmers and our fishermen”
“States with tourism focus got special attention in vaccination drive and Goa benefited a great deal by that”
I welcome all the Goans who fulfilled the dream of Atmanirbhar Bharat through Swayampurna Goa. It is truly a delight that the needs of Goans could be met in Goa itself, owing to your tireless efforts.
During interaction with the beneficiaries of Swayampurna (self-sufficient) Goa, we all experienced the change and the self-confidence that follows when there is synergy between the government support and the hard work of the people. Dr. Pramod Sawant ji, the popular and energetic Chief Minister who showed Goa the path of this meaningful change, my senior colleague in the Union Cabinet Shripad Naik ji, Deputy CMs of Goa Shri Manohar Ajgaonkar ji and Shri Chandrakant Kavlekar ji, other ministers of the state government, MPs, MLAs, all representatives of local bodies, Zilla Parishad members, Panchayat members, other public representatives and my dear brothers and sisters of Goa!!
It is said that Goa means pleasure, Goa means nature and Goa means tourism. But today I will also say that Goa means a new model of development. Goa is a reflection of collective efforts. Goa means solidarity for development from panchayat to administration.
Over the years, the country has come out of paucity to make its goal of meeting the needs and aspirations. Top priority has been given to provide those basic facilities to the countrymen who were deprived for decades. This year on 15th August, I had also mentioned from the Red Fort that we now have to take these schemes to the target of saturation i.e. 100 percent. Goa is playing a leading role in achieving these goals under the leadership of Pramod Sawant ji and his team. India set the goal of being free from open defecation. Goa achieved this target 100 percent. The country set a target of providing electricity connection to every household. Goa also achieved it 100 percent. Goa became the first state again in achieving the 100 percent target in Har Ghar Jal Abhiyan! Goa also scored 100 percent as far as free ration to the poor is concerned.
Two days ago, India crossed the huge milestone of giving 100 crore vaccine doses. In this too, Goa has achieved 100 percent as far as the first dose is concerned. Goa is now putting all its efforts to achieve the 100 percent target for the second dose.
Brothers and sisters,
I am happy that Goa is not only successfully implementing but expanding the schemes of the Central Government for the convenience and dignity of women. Goa has done a great job in providing facilities to women, whether it is toilets, Ujjwala gas connections or Jan Dhan bank accounts. It is because of this reason that thousands of sisters got free gas cylinders and money could be deposited in their bank accounts during the Corona lockdown. The Government of Goa has also given a lot of facilities to the sisters by providing tap water to every household. Now the Goa government is working to make the lives of the sisters of Goa even better with schemes like Griha Aadhar and Deen Dayal Social Security.
Brothers and sisters,
The true potential is known when times are tough and there are challenges ahead. In the last one-and-a-half years, Goa not only faced the biggest pandemic of hundred years, but also endured the horrors of severe cyclones and floods. I realize the hardships caused to the tourism sector of Goa. But in the midst of these challenges, the Government of Goa and the Central Government were engaged in providing relief to the people of Goa with double the strength. We did not allow development works to stop in Goa. I would like to congratulate Pramod ji and his entire team for making Swayampurna Goa Abhiyan the basis of Goa's development. In order to accelerate this mission, another important step has been taken and that is 'Sarkar Tumchya Dari' (government at your doorstep).
This is an extension of the pro-people, proactive governance spirit with which the country has been moving forward for the last seven years. Governance where the government itself goes to the citizens and solves their problems! Goa has developed a good model at the village, panchayat and district levels. I have full faith that Goa will be able to achieve the rest of the goals very soon with everyone's efforts just as it has been 100 percent successful in many of the Centre's campaigns so far.
If I talk about Goa and there is no mention of football, it cannot be. Goa's craze for football is exceptional. Whether it is a defence or a forward in the game of football, all goals are (goal) oriented. While somebody has to save a goal and someone has to score a goal. This spirit of achieving their respective goals was never missing in Goa. But the earlier governments lacked a team spirit, to create a positive environment. For a long time, political interests prevailed over good governance in Goa. The political instability also harmed the development of the state. But in the last few years, the sensible people of Goa have converted this instability to stability. Pramod ji's team is sincerely giving new heights to Goa with the belief with which my friend late Manohar Parrikar ji took Goa forward. Today Goa is marching ahead with renewed confidence. The result of this new spirit of Team Goa is the resolve of Swayampurna Goa.
Brothers and sisters,
Goa also has a very rich rural economy and an attractive urban life. Goa also has farms and there are possibilities of development of a blue economy. Goa has everything needed for a self-reliant India. Therefore, the overall development of Goa is a big priority of the double engine government.
The double engine government is paying special attention to the rural, urban and coastal infrastructure of Goa. Be it the second airport in Goa, the construction of a logistics hub, the second largest cable-bridge in India, the construction of a national highway with thousands of crores of rupees, all these projects are going to give new dimensions to the national and international connectivity of Goa.
Brothers and sisters,
The infrastructure being developed in Goa will also help in increasing the income of farmers, herdsmen and our fishermen. This year, Goa's fund has been increased five times as compared to earlier for modernization of its rural infrastructure. The central government has allocated Rs 500 crores to Goa for the development of its rural infrastructure. This will give a new impetus to the ongoing projects related to agriculture and animal husbandry.
The Government of Goa is committed to the Central Government schemes of connecting farmers and fishermen with banks and markets. A large number of small farmers in Goa are either dependent on fruits and vegetables or engaged in the fisheries. Securing easy bank loans for these small farmers, herdsmen and fishermen was a big challenge. Keeping this problem in mind, the Kisan Credit Card scheme has been expanded. While small farmers are being given KCC on mission mode, herdsmen and fishermen are being linked to it for the first time. Hundreds of new Kisan Credit Cards have been issued in Goa in a short span of time and crores of rupees have been given. The farmers of Goa have greatly benefited from the PM Kisan Samman Nidhi scheme. Due to such efforts, many new friends are also adopting farming. Within a year, the production of fruits and vegetables in Goa has increased by about 40 percent. Milk production has also increased by more than 20 percent. I am told that the Goa government has made record procurements from farmers this time.
The food processing industry is going to be a major force of the Swayampurna Goa. Goa can become India's strength, especially in fish processing. India has been exporting raw fish for a long time. Indian fish are processed in East Asian countries and then reach the world markets. To change this situation, the fisheries sector is being helped on a large scale for the first time. Incentives are being given at every level, from creation of a separate ministry to modernization of fishermen's boats for fish trade. Our fishermen in Goa are also benefiting under the Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana.
The development of Goa's environment and tourism is directly linked to the development of India. Goa is an important center of India's tourism sector. The share of the tour, travel and hospitality industry is continuously increasing in India's fast growing economy. Naturally, Goa's share in this is also very high. For the last few years, every kind of help is being offered to give impetus to the tourism and hospitality sector. The Visa on Arrival facility has been expanded. In the last few years, the Central Government has given assistance of crores of rupees to Goa for the development of other tourism infrastructure besides connectivity.
Special incentives have been given to the states of the country, including Goa, which are centers of tourism in India's vaccination campaign. Goa has also benefited a lot from this. Goa made round-the-clock efforts to administer the first dose of the vaccines to all the eligible people. Now the country has also crossed the 100 crore vaccine dose mark. This has increased the confidence of the people in the country and the tourists as well. Now that you are gearing up for Diwali, Christmas and New Year, this festive and holiday season will witness a new energy in Goa's tourism sector. The movement of both domestic and foreign tourists to Goa is definitely going to increase. This is a very good sign for the tourism industry of Goa.
Brothers and sisters,
Goa will become self-sufficient only when it will make 100 percent utilization of every such potential of development. Swayampurna Goa is the resolution to realize the aspirations of the common man. Swayampurna Goa is the trust of health, convenience, safety and dignity of mothers, sisters and daughters. In Swayampurna Goa, there are employment and self-employment opportunities for the youth. In Swayampurna Goa, there is a glimpse of Goa's prosperous future. This is not just a program of five months or five years, but it is the first step towards the vision for the next 25 years. Every person of Goa has to mobilize to reach this stage. Goa needs the continuation of the double engine development for this. Goa needs the existing explicit policy, a stable government and an energetic leadership. With the tremendous blessings of the whole of Goa, we will fulfill the resolve of Swayampurna Goa. With the same belief, wishing you all the very best!