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Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Canada visit was historic, significant, decisive and memorable. It was a visit aimed at strengthening the cooperation between India and Canada.The Prime Minister’s visit attached great importance for improving the India-Canada ties. From inking crucial pacts with Canada to reaching out to the Indian Community in Toronto to visiting Vancouver with PM Stephen Harper, the visit was lined up with frequent events. Delighted to have got a chance to visit Canada, PM even expressed his joy over twitter before embarking on his visit.

It was a standalone bilateral visit by an Indian Prime Minister in 42 long years! Prime focus was on to advance partnership and cooperation between both the nations. PM Modi and PM Harper held extensive talks and discussions to take India-Canada relationship to the next level and obtain substantial outcomes.

Holding meetings with Canadian business houses, leaders and heads of state, Prime Minister Modi presented an image of a developed India –an India that was transforming at the fastest pace among all the emerging economies throughout the globe. Canada, he considered to be a key partner in every area of India’s national development priority.

Strongly condemning terrorism that had gripped both the nations in the past Prime Minister Modi called for promoting a comprehensive global strategy, consistent policy and strong action against all sources of violence. PM Narendra Modi sought to enhance India’s defence and security cooperation with Canada. PM Modi and PM Harper also paid a visit to the Kanishka Air India Memorial and remembered the people who lost their lives in the tragic air bombing in 1985.

Resuming the Civil nuclear energy cooperation, expanding trade and technology were the high priority areas in which both the nations signed agreements. Discussions were held about agriculture, education sector and skill development too. About the agreement on procurement of uranium from Canada, PM Modi expressed his part of content and assured the Canadian counterpart about alterations that were taking place in India rapidly.

An electrifying crowd waited eagerly for PM Modi at Ricoh Coliseum in Toronto. There was tremendous enthusiasm gripped the Indian Diaspora soon as Shri Narendra Modi reached the venue. Speaking to the audience in Toronto, the Prime Minister highlighted strength possessed in “India + Canada”partnership.He took some time to praise Canada for the hearty welcome and Prime Minister Stephen Harper for his vision and leadership.

Shri Narendra Modi assumed India-Canada partnership to be based on shared values. He noted the contribution that Indians made to Canada.India, PM Modi said was a youthful nation that needed the opportunity to showcase the great potential India’s youth possessed. He talked about improving the perceptions about India among the people, adding he wanted India to go from “Scam India” to “Skilled India.”

Visiting the Gurudwara Khalsa Diwan and Lakshmi Narain Temple on the last day of his Canada tour, PM Modi and PM Harper fortified the cultural ties between both the nations.

Leaving Canada with immense satisfaction Prime Minister Narendra Modi developed a sense of optimism that India and Canada would move shoulder to shoulder with each other in the times to come. He hoped that Canada would continue to be India’s one of the most vital partners and re-emerge as one of the key economic partners.

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PM visits Kerala, reviews relief and rescue operations
August 18, 2018
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The Prime Minister visited Kerala to review the situation arising out of floods in the State. After a review meeting, he made an aerial assessment of the damages caused due to floods in some of the affected areas of the State, as permitted by weather conditions.  During the aerial survey, the Prime Minister was accompanied by the Governor, the Chief Minister, Shri K.J. Alphons (Union Minister of State) and officials.

The Prime Minister expressed his grief and sorrow on the unfortunate deaths and damage caused to lives and property due to floods.  

The Prime Minister reviewed the flood situation during a meeting with Shri Pinarayi Vijayan, the Chief Minister of Kerala, and officials of the State Government.

After the review, the Prime Minister announced a financial assistance of Rs 500 crore to the State. This is in addition to Rs. 100 Cr. announced by the Home Minister on 12.08.2018.  He also assured the State Government that relief materials including foodgrains, medicines etc would be provided, as requested.

PM also announced ex-gratia of @ Rs. 2 lakh per person to the next kin of the deceased and @ Rs. 50,000 to those seriously injured from PM’s National Relief Funds (PMNRF).

PM has directed Insurance Companies to hold special camps for assessment & timely release of compensation to the affected families/beneficiaries under Social Security Schemes. The directions have also been issued for early clearance of claims under Fasal Bima Yojna to agriculturists.  

PM has directed National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) to repair main national highways damaged due to floods on priority. The Central Public Sector like NTPC and PGCIL have also been directed to be available to render all possible assistance to the State Government in restoring power lines.

Villagers, whose kutcha houses have been destroyed in the devastating floods, would be provided Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Gramin houses on priority irrespective of their priority in the Permanent Wait List of PMAY-G.

Under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme 5.5 Cr. person days have been sanctioned in the labour budget 2018-19. Any further request for incurring the person days would be considered as per the requirement projected by the State.

Under the Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture, farmers would be provided assistance for replantation of damaged horticulture crops.

The flood situation in Kerala has been continuously and closely monitored by the Union Government. All help is being provided to the State Government to deal with the adverse situation. The Prime Minister has been in constant touch with the Chief Minister regarding the flood situation.

On the direction of the Prime Minister,  Shri Kiren Rijiju, MoS (Home) accompanied by the Shri K.J. Alphons, MoS (I/C), and a high-level Central Team visited the flood affected districts of Alappuzha and Kottayam on 21.07.2018, reviewed the flood situation, relief measures and met affected people.  

On 12th August, 2018, Shri Rajnath Singh, Union Home Minister accompanied by Shri K.J. Alphons, MoS (I/C), Tourism and senior officers visited the flood/landslide affected areas of Kerala and carried out aerial survey of the affected areas and reviewed the search, rescue and relief measures taken by the State and Central Government agencies with CM, Kerala, and other Ministers and Officials. The Home Minister also announced release of Rs. 100 Cr. in advance from the NDRF.

An Inter-Ministerial Centre Team (IMCT) has already visited the affected areas in the State for assessment of losses from 7-12 August, 2018 as per the Memorandum dated 21.07.2018 submitted by the State Government.

57 Teams of NDRF involving about 1300 personnel and 435 Boats are deployed for search and rescue operations. Five (5) Companies of BSF, CISF and RAF’s have been deployed in the State to carry out rescue and relief measures.

The Army, Air Force, Navy and Coast Guard are also deployed for assisting the State in search & rescue operations. A total of 38 helicopters have been deployed for rescue and relief measures. In addition, 20 Aircraft are also being used for ferrying resources. Army has deployed 10 Columns and 10 Teams of Engineering Task Force (ETFs) involving around 790 trained personnel’s. Navy is providing 82 teams. The Coast Guard has provided 42 teams; 2 helicopters and 2 ships.

Since 9th August, the NDRF, Army and Navy together have rescued /evacuated 6714 persons and provided medical assistance to 891 persons.

The Prime Minister complimented the State Government for the efforts made in meeting the challenges of the unprecedented situation. He observed that rescue of people who are still marooned remains the topmost priority. Government of India will continue to support the State Government in all its endeavours.