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PM Modi pays tribute to the victims of terror strikes in Brussels
The whole of India stands in full support and solidarity with the Belgian people: PM
India offers a huge opportunity - not just a market but as a huge talent pool: PM
India is one of the brightest economic opportunities in the world today. We are one of the fastest growing economies of the world: PM
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Your Excellency Prime Minister Charles Michel, 

Ladies and Gentlemen.

Thank you for your remarks.

Last week has been a sad week for Belgium. Let me say Mr. Prime Minister that we share the depth of sorrow and grief that the people of Belgium have experienced in the last 8 days. My deepest condolences to the families of those who lost their loved ones to the terror strikes in Brussels last week. Having experienced terrorist violence ourselves on countless occasions, we share your pain. Mr. Prime Minister, in this time of crisis, the whole of India stands in full support and solidarity with the Belgian people. I deeply appreciate your welcome and the time that you have devoted to me despite pressing demands on you. As part of our efforts to respond to this common challenge we could resume discussions on a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty. Negotiations on Extradition Treaty and a Treaty on Exchange of Sentenced Prisoners could be concluded expeditiously .

Friends,

Our two countries share a long history of friendship. A hundred years ago, more than 130,000 soldiers from India fought in the First World War alongside your countrymen on Belgian soil. More than 9,000 Indian soldiers made the supreme sacrifice. Next year will mark the 70th anniversary of India-Belgium diplomatic ties. To celebrate this important milestone in our friendship, we look forward to welcoming His Majesty King Philippe of Belgium in India next year. We would also be commemorating it with a joint programme of activities in each others’ countries. My conversation with Prime Minister Charles Michel today covered the whole spectrum of our ties. A system of bilateral foreign policy consultations would recommend concrete ways to upgrade our partnership.

Friends,

India is one of the brightest economic opportunities in the world today. Our macroeconomic fundamentals are robust , and at 7% plus, we are one of the fastest growing economies of the world. I believe that a combination of Belgian capacities and India’s economic growth can produce promising opportunities for businesses on both sides. Prime Minister and I have just held a productive interaction with Belgian CEOs and business persons earlier today. I invite the Belgian government and companies to pro-actively associate with India's ambitious development projects including Digital India, Start Up India and Skill India. Belgian businesses can make their global supply chains more cost effective by manufacturing in India. India's goal to modernize infrastructure, especially railways and ports, and building of 100 plus smart cities also presents a unique investment opportunity for the Belgian companies. These partnerships can help us reach new heights in our trade and commercial partnership. I have invited Prime Minister Michel to visit India with Belgian businesses to see first-hand the reality of India's economic and political promise. Clearly, it is not just diamonds that can bring shine to our partnership. Climate change is one of the greatest challenges before mankind. Prime Minister and I have agreed to enhance our cooperation in renewable energy. We would also build partnerships in areas such as harnessing waste for energy, small wind turbines and zero emission buildings. Advancement in S&T and High technology areas is of particular importance for India's development priorities. We welcome Belgium’s collaboration in these areas. Prime Minister Michel and I have just activated , remotely, India’s largest optical telescope. This product of Indo-Belgian collaboration is an inspiring example of what our partnership can achieve. The work is also afoot on other agreements in the areas of Information and Communication Technology, audio-visual production Tourism biotechnology and shipping and ports.

Friends,

In a couple of hours from now, I would meet the E.U. leadership for the 13th India-E.U. Summit. For India, E.U. is one of our strongest strategic partners. Trade, Investment, and technology partnership between India and the E.U. would be one of the focus areas of our discussions. I feel that a progressive path and creative mind-set to India-E.U Trade and Investment Agreement can enable all the European countries, including Belgium, to benefit from India’s strong economic growth. I once again express my sincere gratitude to Prime Minister Charles Michel for his time, welcome and hospitality. I look forward to welcoming him in India.

Thank you.

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PM inaugurates and lays the foundation stone of multiple development initiatives worth over Rs. 1800 crores
July 07, 2022
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“Kashi today presents a picture of development with heritage”
“My Kashi is a great example of Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas aur Sabka Prayas”
“The citizens of Kashi have given a message to the entire country that short-cuts cannot benefit the country”
“ The government has always tried to solve the problems of the poor, tried to support them in their happiness and sorrow”
“For us, development isn’t just glitter. For us, development means empowerment of the poor, downtrodden, deprived, backward, tribal, mothers and sisters”

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi today inaugurated and laid the foundation stones of multiple projects worth over Rs. 1800 crores at an event at Dr Sampurnanand Sports Stadium, Sigra, Varanasi. Governor of Uttar Pradesh Smt Anandiben Patel, and Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Yogi Adityanath were among those present on the occasion.

At the outset, the Prime Minister thanked the people of Uttar Pradesh and Kashi for the massive support that they gave in the recent elections.

The Prime Minister said that Kashi has always been alive and in constant flux. Now Kashi has shown a picture of the whole country which has a heritage as well as development. The Prime Minister said that schemes and projects of thousands of crores rupees have been completed and many are going on. He said the soul of Kashi is internal, however, relentless improvement in the body of Kashi is going on. He remarked that the development is making Kashi more mobile, progressive and sensitive. “My Kashi is a great example of Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas aur Sabka Prayas”, he said.

The Prime Minister, who is MP from Kashi, commented “I am happy to see the way the aware citizens of Kashi have done the work to give direction to the country. The citizens of Kashi have given a message to the entire country that short-cuts cannot benefit the country.” He praised the local people for preferring long-lasting solutions and projects over temporary and short-cut solutions. He said improvements in infrastructure and other spheres have brought tourism to the city and created new opportunities for business and ease of living.

Talking about the upcoming Sawan month, the Prime Minister said devotees of Baba Vishwanath from all over the country and the world are going to come to Kashi in large numbers. This, he remarked, will be the first Sawan festival after the completion of the Vishwanath Dham project. He said people have experienced in the past months how much enthusiasm there is in the whole world about Vishwanath Dham. He said the government is moving ahead with a goal to make the experience of devotees as rich and easy as possible. Various Yatras of faith are being made easy and convenient.

“For us, development doesn't just mean glitter. For us, development means empowerment of the poor, downtrodden, deprived, backward, tribal, mothers and sisters”, the Prime Minister said. He said the government is working continuously on providing pucca houses and piped water to every household.

The Prime Minister said our government has always tried to solve the problems of the poor, tried to support them in their happiness and sorrow. From the free corona vaccine to the provision of free rations to the poor, the government has not left any opportunity to serve the people. Digital India, Ayushman Bharat, increasing medical infrastructure is creating new opportunities for the people. The Prime Minister remarked that on one hand, we are expanding the facilities for CNG-run vehicles to make the cities of the country smoke-free. On the other hand, we are also giving the option of connecting diesel and petrol-powered boats of our sailors with CNG and taking care of Ganga ji.

The Prime Minister also noted the enthusiasm of sportspersons for getting a new sports centre. The Prime Minister said that the government is working on making all facilities for Olympics sports available in Kashi. He said international facilities are being created in the redeveloped stadium at Sigra. This six decades-old stadium will be equipped with the facilities of the 21st century.

The Prime Minister asked the people of Kashi to keep Ganga and Varanasi clean and expressed the confidence that with the support of the people and blessings of Baba Vishwanath, all pledges for the city will be fulfilled.

Inauguration and foundation stone of multiple development initiatives

In the last eight years, the Prime Minister has put a lot of focus on infrastructure development in Varanasi. This has resulted in the transformation of the landscape of the city. The primary focus of this endeavour has been enhancing the ease of living for the people. Taking another step in this direction, during the programme, the Prime Minister inaugurated projects worth over Rs 590 crores. Among these are multiple initiatives under Varanasi Smart City and Urban Projects, including the re-development of Namo Ghat in Phase-I along with the construction of bathing jetty; conversion of diesel and petrol engines of 500 boats into CNG; redevelopment of Kameshwar Mahadev ward of Old Kashi and over 600 EWS flats constructed in village Harhua, Dasepur; new Vending Zone and urban place prepared under Lahartara-Chowka Ghat Flyover; tourist facility and market complex at Dashashwamedh Ghat; and 33/11 KV Substation at Nagwa under IPDS Work Phase-3.

The Prime Minister also inaugurated various road projects including the construction of Four Lane Road over Bridge (ROB) on Babatpur-Kapsethi-Bhadohi Road; Bridge on Varuna River on Central Jail road; widening of Pindra-Kathiraon Road; widening of Phoolpur-Sindhaura Link Road; strengthening and construction of 8 rural roads; construction of 7 PMGSY roads and widening of Dharsauna-Sindhaura road.

The Prime Minister also inaugurated various projects related to the improvement of sewerage and water supply in the district. These include rehabilitation of Old Trunk Sewer Line in Varanasi City through trenchless technology; laying of sewer lines; over 25000 sewer house connections in Trans Varuna area; leakage repair works in Sis Varuna area of the city; rural drinking water scheme at Taatepur village, etc. Various social and education sector-related projects to be inaugurated include ITI at Village Mahgaon, Phase-II of Vedic Vigyan Kendra in BHU, Govt. Girls Home at Ramnagar, Theme Park in Govt. Old Age Women Home at Durgakund.

The Prime Minister inaugurated a synthetic athletic track and synthetic basketball court in Dr Bhim Rao Ambedkar Sports Complex, Bada Lalpur and various police and safety fire projects including non-residential Police Station building at Sindhaura, construction of hostel rooms, barracks in Mirzamurad, Cholapur, Jansa and Kapsethi police stations and building of Fire Extinguisher Centre in Pindra.

During the programme, the Prime Minister also laid the foundation stone for projects worth more than Rs 1200 crores. Among these are multiple road infrastructure projects including a six-lane widening of road from Lahartara - BHU to Vijaya Cinema; four-lane widening of road from Pandeypur Flyover to Ring Road; Four lanes of road from Kuchaheri to Sandaha; widening and strengthening of Varanasi Bhadohi Rural Road; construction of five new Roads and four CC roads in Varanasi rural area; construction of ROB near Babatpur railway station on Babatpur-Chaubeypur road. These projects will significantly help in reducing the traffic load on city and rural roads.

To give a fillip to tourism in the region, Prime Minister laid the foundation stone of multiple projects including the development work of the Sarnath Buddhist Circuit under the World Bank-aided UP Pro-Poor tourism development project, construction of Paavan Path for Asht Vinakaya, Dwadash Jyotirling Yatra, Asht Bhairaw, Nav Gauri Yatra, Tourism Development work of five stoppages in Panchkosi Parikrama Yatra Marg and Tourism development various wards in Old Kashi.

The Prime Minister also laid the foundation of Phase 1 of redevelopment works of Sports Stadium at Sigra.