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Chief Minister Narendra Modi today announced 'Swarnim Seva Township' scheme to provide plots free-of-cost with planned civic infrastructure for the homeless in rural areas, as part of the state's golden jubilee celebration.

Addressing a Garib Kalyan Mela at Dholka taluka town, he said that his government is committed to empower the poor and free them from the shackles of debt by eliminating the middlemen. The plan is to deploy the state administration in implementing the scheme in a concerted move with the people's participation.

He said that thousands of crores have been spent on poor in the past too, but the poor remained where they were. The need is for the people to decide not to remain poor any more. The state treasury is not for the government but for 5.5-crore people, and the poor have the first right in the kitty. The 'sakhi mandals' were involved in the management of Rs.1,000-crore Self-Help Groups (SHGs) in the past.

Mr. Modi recalled that 50 Garib Kalyan Melas held last year provided the poor the energy and confidence to fight poverty, during when 21-lakh people received Rs.2,700-crore.

While assistance worth Rs.1.59-crore were disbursed to 5,303 beneficiaries at Dholka today, he said that 300 such talukas and city wards are proposed to be covered in the sixth round of Garib Kalyan Mela during the current year.

Minister of State for Industries Saurabh Patel said the government has decided to provide electricity to the Below Poverty Line (BPL) families at Rs.1.50 per unit up to first 30 units to ensure every hut is lit.

Former Agriculture Minister Bhupendrasinh Chudasma wished the dividing line between towns and villages be erased fast, by proving urban facilities in rural areas. He listed Jyoti Gram and Chiranjivi Yojna, EMRI-108 as some of the schemes.

Prominent among others who attended the Dholka Mela included Minister of State for Home Amit Shah, MPs, MLAs, Ahmedabad Mayor Kanaji Thakor and AUDA Chairman Dharmendra Shah.

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PM reviews status of oxygen availability to ensure adequate supply
April 16, 2021
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PM Narendra Modi took a comprehensive review to ensure adequate medical grade oxygen supply in the country. Inputs from ministries like Health, DPIIT, Steel, Road Transport, etc were also shared with the PM. PM stressed that it is important to ensure synergy across ministries & state governments.

PM Modi also took a detailed review of current situation of oxygen supply and projected use in the coming 15 days across 12 high burden states (Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan). An overview of district level situation in these states was presented to the PM.

PM was informed that the Centre and States are in regular contact and estimates for projected demand have been shared with states as on 20th April, 25th April & 30th April. Accordingly, 4,880 MT, 5,619 MT and 6,593 MT have been allocated to these 12 states for meeting their projected demand as on 20th April, 25th April and 30th April, respectively.

PM was briefed about production capacity in the country to meet the rising demand. PM suggested to increase oxygen production as per capacity of each plant. It was discussed that surplus stocks of oxygen supply in steel plants are being offered from medical use.

PM urged officials to ensure seamless and free movement of tankers carrying oxygen throughout the country. The Government has exempted all interstate movement of oxygen tankers from registration of permits to enable easier movement. PM was informed that States and transporters have been asked to ensure tankers move round the clock with drivers working in shifts to ensure faster turnaround and adequate capacity to meet the surge in demand. Cylinder filling plants will also be permitted 24 hour working with necessary safeguards. The Government is allowing Industrial cylinders to be used for medical oxygen after due purging. Similarly nitrogen and argon tankers will be automatically allowed to be converted to oxygen tankers to overcome the potential shortage of tankers.

Officers also briefed the PM about the efforts being made to import medical grade oxygen.