Gujarat will attain new heights in all the fields despite criticism from adversaries: Narendra Modi

Chief Minister Narendra Modi sends his heartfelt greetings to the people of Gujarat on the occasion of 65th Independence Day with a resolve to ensure the State attains new heights in all the fields.

Some people have jumped on a trail to waylay the people of Gujarat in wrong directions by spreading untruths, but Gujaratis would move on with the mantra that “Gujarat's development is for India's development”. He appealed to the people of Gujarat to pay their obeisance to all the great martyrs and fulfill their dreams who had sacrificed their lives.

Giving details of the state's all round development in agriculture, in skill development among youth, empowerment of women, Garib Kalyan Mela for the welfare of the poor, Apno Taluko Vibrant Taluko (ATVT). Gujarat is an exception among different states, which has increased area under cultivation along side industrial development.

Mr. Narendra Modi's message to the people on the 65th Independence Day is as follows:

Dear fellow brothers and sisters, many greetings on the occasion of Independence. This is a festival to remember, pay our respect and realize the dreams of innumerous martyrs and great men, who have sacrificed their lives.

It is out collective responsibility to work for the welfare of the country and for the welfare of the poor and work to realize the dreams of the young. Blessed by the birth of many great men like Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Saheb, Gujarat has a special responsibility. India's development lies in Gujarat's development. There is no better way to serve Bharat Mata. We would not spare any effort to earnestly and honestly fulfill the responsibility thrust on us.

Gujarat has never been in the back foot in the welfare of the nation. It has huge contributions in the nation's march to progress. There is no district in India from where the people have not come to Gujarat to realize their dream, to serve their family through service to others to live a peaceful life.

India is a predominantly agrarian state and yet farmers have to commit suicide. There could not be anything more unfortunate. Gujarat has lent importance to agricultural development. While the country's agricultural growth rate is stagnant around 2-3 per cent, Gujarat made it over 10 per cent, having worked for the wellbeing of the farmers. Usually the states with high industrial growth lose farm land, but Gujarat is one exception where the area under cultivation has increased with industrial development. It is not a small achievement. I want to say it with proud that we have tried to improve the lot of farmers and it is being discussed all over the country and abroad. Recently, the Supreme Court has profusely praised Gujarat's land policies. It is a slap on the face of those who are trying to waylay the people of Gujarat. This has helped the people to work with renewed vigor. There was a time when Gujarat's farm land used to be sold at a rate of maximum Rs.3,000 to Rs.7,000 per acre.Today it is being quoted in Rs.3-lakh to Rs.7-lakh per acre. Now the farm land in Gujarat is being sold in square yard and square foot. Farmers are getting the price they demand. What led to such a price rise in farmers' land? Had there been no industrial development, no infrastructure development in the state, the farm land would have been still sold in the same low prices. When a farmer used to marry his daughter he has to sell land by one or two bighas. Today, he decides the terms and conditions of the sale. This has been possible because of pro-rural, pro-poor, long-term policies.

I have a special message for those who are trying to waylay the people through untruths about Gujarat: This is the land which has increased milk production by 60 per cent in the last decade. Had there been no effort to build cattle stock, the dairies would not have got milk supply. We are now exporting milk to the world. It is a truth like the lamp, the milk vans going past us on roads. Gujarat has created its own identity as a frontline state in agricultural, milk production as well as in value.

Gujarat's youth power is poised to be India's strength soon. The youth power is India's biggest strength. India is the country with the world's maximum number of young people. Time is changing. If the youth get the opportunity to increase their skill and trades, Gujarat could lead on this front too. They are becoming mature at a younger age. They realize their responsibility. They are no more interested in just collecting certificates from schools and colleges. They have capacity. They want to convert their capacity into gainful activity. They want to contribute to family income. They are going for more technical education. They are keen to join the state's march to progress. Gujarat is making its projects keeping these youths in mind. While only 6 per cent of India's population lives in Gujarat, its share in creating jobs is 55 to 56 per cent. This amounts to Gujarat providing 56 per cent of total jobs, all other states together providing the remaining 44 per cent of jobs.

Seeing that students in Gujarat have developed interest in technical studies, this government has taken some ambitious decisions. We have decided that two year's ITI course after class-8 will be considered equal to class-10. And the same way a two year's ITI course after class-10 will be considered equal to class-12. In this case, if a student wants to study further after class-10 or class-12 and wants to get a higher technical degree, doors are made open for him. In Gujarat, there is a great need for trained youth and the government has taken appropriate measures for it. We have focused on the skill development among the youths. Gujarat is the state where maximum efforts are being put behind the skill development among the youths. The reason is that - I have faith in the youth power of this state. My young friends, I have complete faith that if we can combine the godly power within us with the government planning, Gujarat can emerge as a new power within India and the world over.

We want to march ahead by putting trust on our strengths. If 50% of the women of the state start participating in the development, the state can grow greatly and the fruits of the growth can be made even broader. I have personally experienced this.

I want the women of this state with their special skills start participating in the development. I want them to partner in decision making. I want them to involve in financial activities. This is the reason why the state government has created a network of sakhi mandala across the state. We have taken up a project called Mission Mangalam which will enable even the poorest women to live without taking any money on interest. Whether her son is ill or she wants to send her daughter for study or if she wants to marry her daughter, she will have money on her hand. She will not need to go to others asking for money.

Lakhs of sakhi mandals have been created in the state. Banks have been associated with them. Women of sakhi mandalas are managing an amount more than rupees one thousand crore and the state government wishes this amount to increase to rupees five thousand crore.

Just think! How much thrust it will give to the economy of rural families, when an amount more than rupees one thousand crore start circulating through the medium of lakhs of sakhi mandalas. And how scientific that development will be! I have a faith that, in the coming decades women are going to give great strength to the development process of Gujarat. This government has created a foundation for it and we are going to build a new building of growth over this foundation.

The government came up with Garib Kalyan Mela to care for the people of poor class. Benefits were given to the beneficiaries on their doorsteps. Benefits worth thousands and crores of rupees were given. BPL families falling between 0-16 grade were given residential plots. No where in India, this has happened. To those who want to mislead people regarding the lands being given to the industries, I want to tell them loudly and clearly that this is the only government who has given lands to all the eligible BPL families. This government has completed those works which were left unfinished from last 60 years.

I feel pride and satisfied that my government is committed to the welfare of the poor. Government of India has floated a twenty point programme for the welfare of poor. The work done under this programme is being assessed every three months and I would like to say that Gujarat is continually taking the top position among the states who worked best for the welfare of poor.

We don't want poor to remain depended on others. We want to give them work, so that they can come out of poverty. We want to give them courage. We want to empower them with different schemes. And we have made plans for this. With which mantra the state of Gujarat is moving ahead? We say....Sauno sath...Sauno Vikas (Participation of all, growth of all). That is why, when we felt a need to change the administrative system after so many years of Independence, we doubled the number of regional offices. So that, common men can get more facilities just nearer to their home. We have taken up a campaign named Aapno Taluko – Vibrant Taluko. It is about the decentralization of administrative power. This is a wonderful task taken up by us which will enable the common man to participate in the administration and let his issues to be heard.

I am faithful that Aapno Taluko Vibrant Taluko programme (ATVT) will be successful in the coming days. We launched Chalo Taluke campaign to give a boost to ATVT. As a part of the programme, government officials are going to each and every talukas and with the sarpanchs of the village they are chalking out the plans of development for talukas and villages. In India, the talks regarding the decentralization of power has been going on since so many years, but nobody was coming up with the idea of decentralization. Programmes like Aapno Taluko - Vibrant Taluko, Chalo Taluke and Garib Kalyan Mela are like novel experiments which will make talukas to compete with each other for growth. One taluka may decide to give some particular facilities to its people, while the other one will come up with even more facilities. That is how the government wants talukas to compete healthily with each other. Till now, the design of the state was based on districts. I want to change it to talukas. The state which was standing on the pillars of 25-26 districts will now stand on the pillars of 225 talukas. Just think, when the state will stand on 225 pillars, how much powerful it will become? I have a faith in the taluka team. I have a faith in their leadership. And we have initiated movement to take talukas on new heights base on this trust only. And you will see Gujarat attaining new achievements in all the directions.

On this 65th Independence Day, when we remember the great heroes of our country, we should also take pledge. We don't want to stop now. We want to carry on our journey with even more pace. We want to grow in all the fields. Be it education, health, sports, youths, mothers, sisters, farmers, urban poor, village or city or be it my tribal brother or my seafarer brother, I want progress for them all. Come, let us move ahead together in this journey of development.

Only one mantra. Sauno Sath, Sauno Vikas. Once the Gujarat will grow, entire nation will grow. We want Gujarat to grow for India to grow. That is our only mantra.

On this auspicious day, let us salute the freedom fighters of this country. People who sacrifice their lives for nation are important. And people who live committed lives for the nation are also important. We see them all as respectable people. I bow to those who have worked even a little for the good of others. I bow to the freedom fighters of our nation.

Jay Jay Garvi Gujarat…

Bharat mata ki jay…Bharat mata ki jay…

Vande Matram.......Vande Matram

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