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We have set the aim to eradicate TB from India by 2025, says PM Modi
Today I'm confident that in the duration of 1 year we'll be able to achieve 90% immunisation: PM Modi at End TB Summit
Whether the mission of getting relief from TB is in India or in any country, frontline TB practitioners & workers have a large role: PM
Several ministers from all states & concerned officers are present in the event, indicate how we, as Team India, are determined to eradicate TB from India: PM at End TB Summit

Union Health Minister,

Minister of State for Health,

Nigeria Health Minister,

Indonesia Health Minister,

Director General of World Health Organization,

Other dignitaries present on the stage,

Guests from all over the world,

 

Ladies and Gentlemen,

All of you have come to India to attend the 'End TB Summit'. I am very thankful to you and welcome you from the core of my heart.

Friends,

Tuberculosis (TB) was declared an emergency by the World Health Organization nearly 25 years ago. Since then, various efforts have been made to prevent TB in different countries. Of course, we all have come a long way, have done extensive work for elimination of TB but the ground reality is that we still have not been successful in stopping TB.

Friends,

I believe that when a task is being done for ten years or twenty years without the expected results then we should think about changing our approach. We need to analyse the way the work is being done on ground and the way the plans are being implemented, in a very broad way. When you seriously analyze old processes, the path of new approaches opens up.

I am glad that with this thought, India's Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, together with the WHO, South East Asia Region and Stop TB Partnership, have brought representatives from many countries of Asia, Africa and the world together on a single platform today. A major meeting of the General Assembly will be held in the United Nations in September this year. Today's preparations for this meeting are very important for the entire humanity. I hope that the "Delhi End TB Summit" will prove to be a landmark event to eradicate TB permanently.

Friends,

Recently, another related initiative of India has completed one year. Last year, the proposal of "Delhi Call for Action to End TB in the WHO South East Asia Region by 2030" was accepted with consensus. Processes initiated after this proposal are coming out as a very positive initiative towards ending TB in the South East Asia region. Given the way TB affects people's lives, health of society, impacts on country's economy and country's future, it is now indispensable to get rid of TB within the stipulated time. In India, the impact of TB is more than any communicable disease and most of its victims are also poor. Therefore, every step taken to eliminate TB is linked directly to the life of the poor.

 

Friends,

2030 is the deadline fixed for eliminating TB across the world.

But today I am announcing from this forum that India has decided to end TB 5 years before the target year i.e. by 2025 instead of 2030. Our Government is following a new approach with a new strategy for the mission of eradicating TB from India . You have also seen a glimpse of the new strategic initiatives that have been initiated by the Government of India in the presentation. All stakeholders are responsible for the elimination of TB and our government is motivating them to work together.

Brothers & Sisters,

The National Strategic Plan, which was created to eliminate TB in India by 2025, is now fully operational. The budget is being constantly increased by the government for the schemes related to TB. In this year's budget, our government has made provision to spend an extra $ 100 million per year to provide nutritious support to the patients suffering from this disease. Direct financial support is being transferred from the government to the bank accounts of the patients who are not financially sound to buy nutritional support. We are working in the direction of ensuring correct identification of TB patients, timely information about active cases, effectiveness of the medicines, tracking drug-resistant TB. The government is also engaging the private sector in these schemes with the principle of 'Treat every TB patient best at the very first opportunity'. Besides, our emphasis is on the maximum use of technology and new innovations. State-of-the-art Information & Communication Technology systems and related platforms are being developed based on Internet-of-Things. For the management of the program, modern technology is being used to provide mobile-health solutions for treatment monitoring and for disease surveillance.

We also developed the indigenous molecular diagnostic machine for reading Digital X-Ray. This machine-based Artificial Intelligence has been named True NAAT. This machine also emphasizes upon the campaign of Make in India. India TB Research Consortium has also been set up to further strengthen the TB related subjects like vaccine, better medicines, diagnostics and implementation.

State governments are also playing a major role to eradicate TB from India. I have written letters to all the Chief Ministers of the country urging them to join the campaign in order to gain the support of the State Governments, strengthening the spirit of Cooperative Federalism. The presence of the ministers from the states and the related officials in such a large number is the evidence of our determination as a Team India to eliminate TB from our country.

Friends,

Frontline TB physicians and workers have a vital role to play in getting rid of TB irrespective of the country where the mission is being carried out. Moreover, the people who take regular medicines, gets treatment and defeats the disease after getting infected with TB, is also praise-worthy. The patient of TB, who conquers this disease with his willpower, becomes an inspiration for others. I firmly believe that with the help of patients' willpower and our passionate TB workers, every country in this world along with India will be successful in achieving this goal. Here, I will specifically ask the people in the Health Sector from India to do their best because the deadline of TB Free India for them is 2025 instead of 2030. We will continue to implement policies on the ground in the right way and with the right strategy. So no one can stop us from achieving this goal.

Friends,

We can achieve our goal by connecting as many people as possible, by making people aware at the local level, by examining methods of treatment for TB, i.e. multi-sectoral engagement is needed. For this, every level of government and administration, panchayat, municipality, district administration, state government, must utilize its complete strength to make 'TB Free Village, Panchayat, district or state at their own level.

Friends,

For some people, meeting the target of TB free India by 2025, seem to be difficult to achieve. But, this is not impossible. For the past four years our government is working with a new approach to achieve this and it can be possible to achieve the goal.

Brothers & Sisters,

We do not see problems, challenges in isolation. When efforts are made to deal with these challenges in a holistic manner, the results can definitely be achieved. I do not want to criticize anyone but I want to tell you about our immunization programme here. Immunization in India has been going on for 30-35 years. Nevertheless, until 2014 we were unable to achieve the goal of complete coverage. If we had continued with the same pace, India would have taken 40 more years to reach the universal coverage under immunization.

Friends,

Our immunization coverage was growing at a speed of just one per cent. Now, in just three-three and a half years, this has increased to more than 6 per cent per annum and in the next one year, we are going to achieve the goal of 90 per cent immunization coverage. Our guests from other countries must be wondering that how was this possible?

Friends,

The new approach that I have been talking about, is the reason behind it. We first marked those districts of the country and those areas which were out of the ongoing immunization coverage for years or the areas where vaccination was going on just for the sake of it. By targeting these areas our government started Mission Indradhanush, added new medicines for vaccination and started working on ground level. Today we can clearly see the results.

Friends,

With such a new approach our government is also working on Swachh Bharat Mission. As a result, the per centage of cleanliness in the rural areas of the country which was almost 40 per cent in 2014 has now increased to almost 80 per cent. In such a short time, we have doubled the coverage. We are rapidly moving towards open defecation free India by October 2019. I am giving these two examples today on this international forum because I want to emphasize again in front of every country that huge and cumbersome goals can be achieved. Yes, the first requirement for that is to set a goal. When the goal is not fixed, neither can you move ahead nor will you be able to reach the destination.

Friends,

I am convinced that India will fulfill its resolution to become TB free by 2025 with this enthusiasm by moving towards a fixed target with fixed strategy. Friends, all of you are Health Sector Experts. You understand very well that multi-sectoral interventions are needed to eliminate any disease. I have told you about many interventions such as medicines, monitoring of treatment, research, financial assistance for nutritious diet to tackle TB. But along with this, there are some other initiatives that are going on in India which can prove to be very helpful in reducing the effects of TB. One of them is Swach Bharat Mission, about which I have told you in detail. Likewise, the Ujjwala Yojana of the Government of India is also playing a vital role in reducing TB cases. Under this scheme, the government is working to provide free gas connections to 8 crore poor women. With LPG connections at home, the women, their children and their families are getting rid of smoke from firewood and are also reducing the risk of catching TB. Four days back, on International Women's day, our government has started a national level Poshan Mission. The purpose of this mission is not only to give nutritious food to the people but also to create an eco-system in which the probability of malnutrition is minimal.

Friends,

In this year's budget, India has announced the world's largest health assurance scheme. This scheme is named as Ayushman Bharat meaning "Long Live India". Through this our government will work to strengthen the primary, secondary and tertiary health care-system in the country. 1.5 lakh health and wellness centers are being set up by the government in the country. These wellness centers will serve as primary health care centres, where there will be diagnostic services and people will also be provided with cheap medicines. In addition to this, 10 crore poor families will get health assurance of Rs 5. lakh per annum for the treatment of serious diseases.

Brothers & Sisters,

Our Indian philosophy and Indian ancient science have always been very clear about health. We have been told here-

सर्वे भवन्तु सुखिनः,

सर्वे सन्तु निरामयाः

सर्वे भद्राणि पश्यन्तु, मा कश्चिद्दुःखभाग्भवेत् ।

That is,

May All be Happy, May All be Free from Illness

 

May all see what is auspicious, May no one Suffer.

Due to this philosophy, scientific methods like Ayurveda and Yoga were born on the land of India. This is ingrained in the Indian minds for hundreds of years. These methods of curative, Promotive and Preventive Health Care are now getting international recognition. Our government is also moving ahead with the confluence of ancient Indian practices and modern medical practices. I will also urge the Ministry of Health to increase the scope of research on the contribution of Ayurveda in the diagnosis of TB and its results should be shared with our fellow countries. Our mantra of 'Sabka sath Sabka Vikas' is not limited to regional boundaries. To create a TB Free World, India is happily ready to move hand-in-hand with every country. We will cooperate with every country which requires first line drugs, commodities and technical support in the fight against TB.

Friends,

The Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, had said that any plan is successful or unsuccessful depending upon its impact on the last needy person. Our government is committed to reach out to that last needy person and improve his ease of living.

Today, on this occasion, I urge every person, every government, every institution and every representative from the civil society to take up this resolution of playing an active role in building a TB-Free India and reaching out to that last person affected by TB.

The resolution of a TB-Free India will also help in fulfilling the resolution of a TB-Free World.

I conclude my speech with my best wishes to you all for this great resolution. Thank you very much for attending this event. Thank you!

 

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Fifth Governing Council Meeting of NITI Aayog Concludes
June 15, 2019
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The fifth meeting of the Governing Council of NITI Aayog was held under the chairmanship of the Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi at Rashtrapati Bhawan today. It was attended by the Governor of Jammu & Kashmir, 27 Chief Ministers and the Lieutenant Governor of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, apart from Union Ministers, who are ex-officio members and special invitees.

Setting the tone of the meeting, the PM emphasized that this is the meeting of Team India. The PM has asked the states to contribute and improve their contribution in meeting the GDP target. While there may be political differences, in this meeting people of India expect that this team India should take all steps to realize the aspiration of ever Indian. The Prime Minister highlighted the importance of the Governing Council of NITI Aayog as a platform to inspire cooperative federalism, stressing the need to collectively combat poverty, unemployment, drought, pollution, pockets of under-development and all such factors that constrain India’s progress. He emphasized that the goal is to realize the potential of this great country, to make a New India by 2022 and a USD five trillion economy by 2024.

The Prime Minister emphasized the need for every State to focus on increasing its share in the country’s GDP by evaluating the export potential of the State and determining the steps necessary for increasing exports and boosting employment.

Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog urged all States to offer their suggestions on the policy recommendations contained in NITI Aayog’s ‘Strategy for New India @ 75’ so that they can be tweaked to suit the ground realities in individual States. 

On the Agenda before the Fifth Council Meetingwere the following items:

  1. Rain-Water Harvesting
  2. Drought Situation and Relief Measures
  3. Aspirational Districts Programme – Achievements And Challenges
  4. Transforming Agriculture: Need For Structural Reforms With Special Emphasis On:
    1. Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) Act
    2. Essential Commodities Act (ECA)
  5. Security Related Issues with Specific Focus On LWE Districts 

The Prime Minister appreciated the efforts of the States towards water conservation and urged all States to streamline and implement innovative water management measures. The creation of the Ministry of ‘Jal Shakti’ is a key step by the Union Government to develop an integrated and holistic perspective on water as a developmental resource.

There was broad consensus on reducing water wastage, promoting efficient water conservation practices across States, with rain-water harvesting to be undertaken at the household and community level with proactive policy and investment support. Various Chief Ministers presented best practices from their respective states which can serve as templates for replication across the country.

Many States such as Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat and Karnataka have adopted good practices in water conservation and rainwater harvesting. Someinnovative steps include the Jalyukt Shivirin Maharashtra which made 11,000 villages drought free, Mukhya Mantri Jal Swavalamban Abhiyaan which resulted in five feet rise in groundwater in 21 districts, and Mission Kakatiyain Telangana which irrigates 19 Lakh Acres. Similarly, Neeru Chettuin Andhra Pradesh, Sujalam Sufalamin Gujarat and artificial recharge scheme in Karnataka show that determined action produces good results. Chief Minister of Bihar highlighted the decision taken by the State Government to ensure that all Government buildings in the State have a provision for rainwater harvesting.

The Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh urged the Central Government to consider developing acomprehensive drought management plan that can be applicable across States.

The Prime Minister also called upon to undertake foundational reforms in the agri-economy, leading to a complete transformation of the agriculture sector in India. The core agenda items included the need to review the implementation of the APMC Act and possible reform in the form of the Model APMC Act as well as exploring changes in the Essential Commodities Act, to ensure fair remuneration for the farmers, streamlining of supply, driving more investment into the sector and predictability of policy at national and regional levels. The Prime Minister emphasized the need for undertaking structural reforms in agriculture including encouraging corporate investment, strengthening logistics and focusing on food processing.

On Aspirational Districts Programme rapid progress has been achieved across all Aspirational Districts that have participated in this programme in 49 key performance indicators of human and social development. Various Chief Ministers noted the success of the programme in their respective States and also discussed possible challenges and schemes for extension of the programme to rapidly develop blocks in remote and difficult areas so that the spirit of inclusive development is effectively enforced. The Prime Minister commended the district administration teams on implementing several ‘out-of-the-box’ ideas in the Aspirational Districts resulting in significant transformation in many districts such as Khagariya in Bihar, Bokaro in Jharkhand and Mewat in Haryana.

The Prime Minister said that many aspirational districts are affected by Naxal violence. He said the battle against Naxal violence is now in a decisive phase. He said violence will be dealt with firmly, even as development proceeds in a fast-paced and balanced manner.Further reaffirming the commitment of the Government to combat Left Wing Extremism (LWE), Hon. Prime Minister assured the Council that the Ministry of Home Affairs will coordinate with all affected States to decisively end LWE, and drive the agenda of development in these regions.

On Left Wing Extremism, Hon. Union Home Minister informed that steadfast implementation of National Policy & Action Plan started in 2015 has resulted in significant success in combating the LWE problem. Centre and States have collaborated for this endeavor.

The geographical area of influence of LWE has shrunk and the number of perpetrators of violence has declined significantly. He further ensured that the Center will continue to provide assistance to the state in order to completely eradicate this issue over next ten years. The Center Government has already started carrying out essential steps in achieving this target by deploying Centre Armed Police Force in a big way to help stated carry out sustainable operations against Maoists.

There has also been an equally strong focus on developing road and telecom infrastructure in these areas. About 11,000 KM of roads are being constructed at the cost of Rs 18000 crore of which 5500 km of road has already been completed. In order to improve telecom connectivity, 2335 mobile towers have also been installed and in next phase, 4072 towers costing 11,000 Crore will be installed.

The Prime Minister noted the progress made by States towards ensuring a TB Free India by 2025. He urged all States to participate in the Ayushman Bharat programme which is benefitting large numbers of underprivileged families. The Prime Minister emphasized that along the lines of Swachh Bharat, we must now make Swasth Bharata Jan Andolan.

The Finance Minister appreciated the positive engagement and cooperation between the Centre and the States in the GST Council. She also highlighted the unprecedented devolution of a large share of funds from the Centre to the States over the last four years.

The Prime Minister in his concluding remark reemphasized on India’s need to prioritise its water challenges and make appropriate interventions to solve them. He said water conservation and irrigation, both require a massive effort, based on public participation.

The Prime Minister announced the creation of a high powered committee on structural reforms in agriculture. He further called upon States to review the progress of Aspirational Districts from time to time and expressed the need of a new model of governance needs to be established in aspirational districts.

The Prime Minister said global circumstances currently offer a unique opportunity to India. He said India is establishing itself on global benchmarks such as Ease of Doing Business. He said we should endeavour to make India a 5 trillion dollar economy by 2024, at the earliest. The Prime Minister said that for this purpose, States should aim to increase their economy by 2 to 2.5 times. He said the common man's purchasing power would increase as a result of this.

He called upon Chief Ministers to study the State's export potential, and work on export promotion.

The Prime Minister said that the mining sector can provide significant employment opportunities. He said that bottlenecks in operationalization of mines continue to exist in several States. He said the NITI Aayog is working on these issues.

The Prime Minister thanked the Chief Ministers for their suggestions and reiterated that that the Union Government is keen to partner with the States, and work together for India's development.