India has resolved to increase its strength, self-reliance in the pandemic: PM Modi

Published By : Admin | September 30, 2021 | 11:01 IST
PM also lays the foundation stone for four new medical colleges in Rajasthan
“India has resolved to increase its strength, self-reliance in the pandemic”
“We have worked on a national approach and national health policy to transform country’s health sector”
“In the last 6-7 years, more than 170 new medical colleges have been set up and rapid work is going on more than 100 new medical colleges”
“In 2014, the total seats of medical undergraduates and postgraduates in the country were about 82000. Today their number has increased to 140,000”
“Development of Rajasthan, speeds up the development of India”


Son of the soil of Rajasthan and custodian of India's largest Panchayat, the Lok Sabha, our hon’ble Speaker Shri Om Birla ji, Chief Minister of Rajasthan Shri Ashok Gehlot ji, Union Health Minister Shri Mansukh Mandaviya ji, all my other colleagues in the Union Cabinet Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat ji, Bhupendra Yadav ji, Arjun Ram Meghwal ji, Kailash Choudhary ji, Dr. Bharati Pawar ji, Bhagwanth Khuba ji, former Chief Minister of Rajasthan Vasundhara Raje ji, Leader of Opposition Gulab Chand Kataria ji, other ministers of Rajasthan government, MPs, MLAs , all other dignitaries present in the program, and my dear brothers and sisters of Rajasthan,

The biggest pandemic of 100 years has posed many challenges to the health sector of the world, and this has taught us a lot. Every country is engaged in dealing with this crisis in its own way. India has resolved to increase its capacity and self-reliance in this calamity. The commencement of the construction of four new medical colleges in Rajasthan and the inauguration of the Institute of Petrochemical Technology in Jaipur is an important step in this direction. I congratulate all the citizens of Rajasthan. Since I have got an opportunity to meet all of you virtually in this special program, I also want to congratulate the sons and daughters of Rajasthan who played an important role in making India proud in the Olympics. By the way, I want to congratulate my sons and daughters of Rajasthan once again today. Awareness programs about plastic and related waste management rules are also going on in 10 CIPET centers of the country, including Jaipur. I extend my very best wishes to all the dignitaries of the country for this initiative.

Brothers and sisters,

The Central Government had given approval for 23 new medical colleges in Rajasthan from 2014 onwards. Out of these, seven medical colleges have started functioning. Today the construction of new medical colleges has started in Banswara, Sirohi, Hanumangarh and Dausa. I congratulate the people of these areas very much. Whenever the people's representatives and our honorable MPs from here used to meet me, they would count the benefits of a medical college. All of you, including MP and my friend 'Kanak-Mal' Katara ji, our senior MP, Jaskaur Meena ji, my very old fellow brother Nihalchand Chauhan ji or our half Gujarati half Rajasthani Bhaidevji Patel, are very conscious about medical infra in Rajasthan. I am sure the construction of these new medical colleges will be completed on time with the cooperation of the state government.


We all are aware of the condition of the medical systems of the country a few decades back. In 2001, 20 years ago, when Gujarat gave me the opportunity to serve as the Chief Minister, the health sector there was also full of challenges. Be it medical infrastructure, medical education, or medical facilities, there was a need to speed up work on every aspect. We accepted the challenge and tried to turn things around together. The facility of free treatment up to Rs 2 lakh was started for poor families in Gujarat under the Mukhyamantri Amrutum Yojana. Under the Chiranjeevi Yojana, pregnant women were encouraged for delivery in hospitals, which was a huge success in saving the lives of mothers and infants. In the case of medical education also, Gujarat has registered an increase in medical seats by six times due to the tireless efforts in the last two decades.


Efforts are being made for the past six-seven years to remove the shortcomings in the health sector which I experienced as the Chief Minister. And we all are aware about the concept of the federal structure under our Constitution. According to it, health is a state subject and it is the responsibility of the state. Since I was the Chief Minister of the state for a long time, I was aware of the difficulties. Therefore, we started efforts in that direction as the Government of India even though it was the responsibility of the state. The biggest problem was that the country’s health system was fragmented. Collective approach was missing at the national level in the medical systems of individual states. In a country like India where better health facilities were confined to state capitals or a few metro cities, where poor families move from one state to another for employment, health schemes confined to state borders were not very useful. Similarly, there was a huge gap between primary healthcare and big hospitals. There was also a lack of synergy between our traditional system of medicine and modern medicine. These deficiencies in governance needed to be addressed. To transform the health sector of the country, we worked on a national approach and a new national health policy. Initiatives like Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, Ayushman Bharat and now Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission are part of this. So far, about 3.5 lakh people of Rajasthan have availed free treatment under the Ayushman Bharat scheme. About 2,500 health and wellness centers, which strengthen health facilities in the countryside, have started functioning in Rajasthan today. The government's emphasis is also on preventive healthcare. We have not only created a new Ministry of AYUSH, but are also promoting Ayurveda and Yoga simultaneously.

Brothers and sisters,

Another major problem has been the slow pace in creating medical infrastructure. It is very important to spread the network of super specialty hospitals like AIIMS and medical colleges to every part of the country. Today we can say with satisfaction that India is moving towards a strong network of more than 22 AIIMS as against six AIIMS. In these 6-7 years, more than 170 new medical colleges have been set up and work on more than 100 new medical colleges is progressing at a brisk pace. The total medical undergraduate and post graduate seats in the country were close to 82,000 till 2014. Today the number is inching towards 1.40 lakh seats. That is, today more youth are getting an opportunity to become doctors. Rajasthan also derived a huge benefit of this rapid progress of medical education. Medical seats have more than doubled in Rajasthan during this period. UG seats have increased from 2,000 to more 4,000. PG seats were less than a thousand in Rajasthan, which will soon be 2100.

Brothers and sisters,

Today, we are endeavouring that every district must have a medical college or at least one institute providing post graduate medical education. In the last few years, major reforms have been undertaken from the governance related to medical education to other policies, laws and institutions. In the past we have seen how the decisions of the earlier Medical Council of India-MCI were questioned, various allegations were leveled against it, and the Parliament used to debate it for hours. There were also doubts about transparency. It had a huge impact on the quality of medical education and delivery of health services in the country. For years, the governments used to think about doing something in this regard, but it was not being done. I, too, faced many challenges. In my first term also, I wanted, but could not do it. Many groups used to put so many obstacles. We also had to endure a lot to fix it. Now the responsibility of these arrangements rests with the National Medical Commission. Its tremendous impact is now visible on the healthcare, human resources and health services of the country.


Changes are necessary in the decades old health system according to the needs of today. The gap between medical education and health service delivery is being bridged continuously. There is a lot of emphasis from the government on big hospitals, whether government or private, so that their resources are used to the maximum in preparing new doctors and paramedics. Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission, launched three-four days ago, will go a long way in providing health services to every nook and corner of the country. Appointments with good hospitals, testing labs, pharmacies and doctors will be done with just one click. There will also be a provision for the patients to maintain their health records.

Brothers and sisters,

Skilled manpower in healthcare has a direct impact on effective health services. We have experienced this even more in this Corona era. The success of the central government's ‘Free vaccine, vaccine for all’ campaign is a reflection of this. Today, more than 88 crore doses of corona vaccine have been administered in India. More than 5 crore vaccine doses have been administered in Rajasthan also. Our doctors, nurses and medical staff are constantly engaged in vaccination at thousands of centers. We have to further increase this capability in the medical field. The study of medical and technical education only in English language has been another obstacle for youth from rural and poor families. Now there is also a scope for medical education in Hindi and other Indian languages under the new National Education Policy. The dreams of the mothers of poor families in the villages of Rajasthan for their children will now be fulfilled easily. The sons and daughters of the poor, who did not get an opportunity to study in English medium schools, will now be able to serve humanity by becoming doctors. It is also necessary that opportunities related to medical education should be equally available to every section of the society. This is the spirit behind giving reservation to OBCs and economically weaker general category youth in medical education.


In this virtuous era of independence, high level of skill will not only strengthen India but will also play a major role in realizing the resolve of AatmaNirbhar Bharat. Skilled manpower is the need of the hour for petro-chemical industry, one of the fastest growing industries. Rajasthan's new Institute of Petrochemical Technology will create new opportunities for hundreds of youth every year in this field. The use of petrochemicals is increasing nowadays in many walks of life ranging from agriculture, healthcare and automobile industry. Therefore, many employment opportunities are going to be created for the skilled youth in the future.


Today when we are inaugurating this petrochemical institute, I am reminded of the time 13-14 years ago when I was Chief Minister of Gujarat and we started working on the idea of ​​Petroleum University. At that time, some people laughed at the idea and questioned the need of this university. What will it be able to do and where will the students come from to study in it was the common refrain. But we did not drop this idea. Land was earmarked in the capital Gandhinagar and Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University- PDPU was started. In a very short span of time, PDPU has shown its worth. Students from all over the country competed to study there. Now the vision of this university has expanded further. Now it is known as Pandit Deendayal Energy University- PDEU. Such institutions are laying the foundation for innovative solutions for clean energy for the youth and developing their expertise.


Rajasthan Refinery Project is progressing rapidly in Barmer. More than 70,000 crore rupees are being invested on this project. This project will create many new opportunities for the professionals graduating from the Institute of Petrochemical Technology. The ongoing city gas distribution work in Rajasthan also has a lot of potential for the youth. Till 2014, only one city in Rajasthan had permission for gas distribution. Today 17 districts of Rajasthan have been authorized for city gas distribution network. In the near future, every district of the state will have a piped gas network.

Brothers and sisters,

A large part of Rajasthan is desert and it is also a border area. Due to the difficult geographical conditions, our mothers and sisters have been facing many challenges. I have been traveling to far flung areas of Rajasthan for many years. I have seen the difficulties faced by mothers and sisters in the absence of toilets, electricity and gas connections. Today life has become very easy due to the access of toilets, electricity and gas connections to the poorest of the poor. Drinking water in Rajasthan, in a way, is a test of the patience for mothers and sisters every day. Now more than 21 lakh families of Rajasthan have started getting piped water under the Jal Jeevan Mission. The Har Ghar Jal Abhiyan is a small yet sincere attempt to heal the blisters on the feet of the mothers, sisters and daughters of Rajasthan.


The development of Rajasthan also gives impetus to the development of India. It also gives me satisfaction when the comfort and the ease of living increases for the poor and the middle class people of Rajasthan. In the last 6-7 years, more than 13 lakh pucca houses have been built for the poor in Rajasthan through the housing schemes of the Centre. Under the PM Kisan Samman Nidhi, about Rs.11,000 crores have been transferred to the bank accounts of more than 74 lakh farmer families of Rajasthan. Under the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana, Rs. 15,000 crore worth claims have been settled for the state farmers.


Being a border state, Rajasthan is being prioritized as far as connectivity and border area development is concerned. Dozens of projects, including the construction of National Highway, new railway lines, city gas distribution, are progressing rapidly. A major part of the Dedicated Freight Corridor going to transform the country's railways is also from Rajasthan and Gujarat. It is also creating many new employment opportunities.

Brothers and sisters,

The potential of Rajasthan inspires the whole country. We also have to boost the potential of Rajasthan and take the country to new heights. This is possible only with the efforts of all of us. With the mantra of Sabka Prayas (efforts of everybody) we have to move forward with renewed vigour in this 75th year of independence. We wish that this virtuous era of independence should also become a golden period of development of Rajasthan. When I was listening to the Chief Minister of Rajasthan, he read out a long list of tasks. I thank the Chief Minister of Rajasthan for trusting me so much. And this is a great strength in a democracy. His political ideology is different from me, but Ashok ji trusts me and, therefore, he shared so many things with an open heart. This friendship and trust are the great strength of democracy. I once again extend my heartfelt greetings and congratulations to the people of Rajasthan.


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Cabinet approves constitution of world’s largest grain storage plan in cooperative sector
May 31, 2023

The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, today approved the constitution and empowerment of an Inter Ministerial Committee (IMC) for facilitation of the “World’s Largest Grain Storage Plan in Cooperative Sector” by convergence of various schemes of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Ministry of Food Processing Industries.

In order to ensure time bound and uniform implementation of the Plan in a professional manner, Ministry of Cooperation will implement a pilot project in at least 10 selected Districts of different States/ UTs in the country. The Pilot would provide valuable insights into the various regional requirements of the project, the learnings from which will be suitably incorporated for the country-wide implementation of the Plan.


An Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) will be constituted under the Chairmanship of Minister of Cooperation, with Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Minister of Food Processing Industries and Secretaries concerned as members to modify guidelines/ implementation methodologies of the schemes of the respective Ministries as and when need arises, within the approved outlays and prescribed goals, for facilitation of the ‘World’s Largest Grain Storage Plan in Cooperative Sector’ by creation of infrastructure such as godowns, etc. for Agriculture and Allied purposes, at selected ‘viable’ Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS).

The Plan would be implemented by utilizing the available outlays provided under the identified schemes of the respective Ministries. Following schemes have been identified for convergence under the Plan:

(a) Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare:

Agriculture Infrastructure Fund (AIF),
Agricultural Marketing Infrastructure Scheme (AMI),
Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH),
Sub Mission on Agricultural Mechanization (SMAM)
(b) Ministry of Food Processing Industries:

Pradhan Mantri Formalization of Micro Food Processing Enterprises Scheme (PMFME),
Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana (PMKSY)
(c) Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution:

Allocation of food grains under the National Food Security Act,
Procurement operations at Minimum Support Price
Benefits of the Plan

The plan is multi-pronged – it aims to address not just the shortage of agricultural storage infrastructure in the country by facilitating establishment of godowns at the level of PACS, but would also enable PACS to undertake various other activities, viz:
Functioning as Procurement centres for State Agencies/ Food Corporation of India (FCI);
Serving as Fair Price Shops (FPS);
Setting up custom hiring centers;
Setting up common processing units, including assaying, sorting, grading units for agricultural produce, etc.
Further, creation of decentralized storage capacity at the local level would reduce food grain wastage and strengthening food security of the country.
By providing various options to the farmers, it would prevent distress sale of crops, thus enabling the farmers to realise better prices for their produce.
It would hugely reduce the cost incurred in transportation of food grains to procurement centres and again transporting the stocks back from warehouses to FPS.
Through ‘whole-of-Government’ approach, the Plan would strengthen PACS by enabling them to diversify their business activities, thus enhancing the incomes of the farmer members as well.
Time-frame and manner of implementation

National Level Coordination Committee will be formed within one week of the Cabinet approval.
Implementation guidelines will be issued within 15 days of the Cabinet approval.
A portal for the linkage of PACS with Govt. of India and State Governments will be rolled out within 45 days of the Cabinet approval.
Implementation of proposal will start within 45 days of the Cabinet approval.

The Prime Minister of India has observed that all out efforts should be made to leverage the strength of the cooperatives and transform them into successful and vibrant business enterprises to realize the vision of “Sahakar-se-Samriddhi”. To take this vision forward, the Ministry of Cooperation has brought out the ‘World’s Largest Grain Storage Plan in Cooperative Sector’. The plan entails setting up various types of agri-infrastructure, including warehouse, custom hiring center, processing units, etc. at the level of PACS, thus transforming them into multipurpose societies. Creation and modernization of infrastructure at the level of PACS will reduce food grain wastage by creating sufficient storage capacity, strengthen food security of the country and enable farmers to realise better prices for their crops.

There are more than 1,00,000 Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS) in the country with a huge member base of more than 13 crore farmers. In view of the important role played by PACS at the grass root level in transforming the agricultural and rural landscape of Indian economy and to leverage their deep reach up to the last mile, this initiative has been undertaken to set up decentralized storage capacity at the level of PACS along with other agri infrastructure, which would not only strengthen the food security of the country, but would also enable PACS to transform themselves into vibrant economic entities.