Chandigarh, August 15 – With a view to utilise the surplus water of river Yamuna during monsoon, the Haryana Government is preparing five projects, which would cost Rs 2,000 crore and make available up to 5,000 cusecs of water to the State.
This was stated by Chief Minister, Mr. Manohar Lal, who was addressing the people after hoisting the National Flag during the 70th Independence Day celebrations at Shaheed Bhagat Singh Stadium in Sirsa today.
Greeting the people of the State on the occasion of Independence Day, he urged them to participate in the year-long Golden Jubilee celebrations of the State with the spirit of ‘Sarv Haryana, Garv Haryana, Parv Haryana’. Earlier, at an impressive march past, he took salute from contingents of Haryana Police and NCC cadets. He also honoured the war widows and freedom fighters and also interacted with them.
He also announced Rs two lakh for those who participated in cultural programmes today and one-day holiday in all schools in the district. Apart from this, the Chief Minister also honoured officials of the district administration and meritorious students.
Laying down his Government’s vision for the upcoming ‘Swaran Jayanti’ celebrations in the State, the Chief Minister said that budget provision of Rs 1,657 crore has been made for implementation of various Swaran Jayanti schemes in 2016-17. A number of new schemes would also be announced on November 1, 2016, when Haryana enters the Golden Jubilee year of its inception, he added.
Paying rich tributes to freedom fighters and brave martyrs, the Chief Minister said that it was a matter of pride that from the freedom struggle beginning in 1857 till date, the brave soldiers of Haryana have always been ready to make the ultimate sacrifice for the country, and their contribution to the freedom struggle would never be forgotten. The society would always remain indebted to their supreme sacrifices as they had laid down their lives during the freedom struggle so that the coming generations could live with dignity. “We cannot repay what our brave martyrs had given to us, but to discharge our duty towards their families, the State Government has enhanced the ex-gratia grant given to the family members of the Armed Forces personnel, who sacrifice their lives in the line of duty, from Rs 20 lakh to Rs 50 lakh. Many other financial incentives and facilities are also being extended to soldiers, ex-servicemen and their dependents,” he added.
Mr. Manohar Lal said that the State Government was developing an international-level war memorial at Ambala to preserve for the posterity the heroic sagas of the sacrifices made by the martyrs from the state who laid down their lives for the country. A symbol of patriotism, this memorial would continue to inspire the youth to devote their lives to the service of the country. He said that heirs of first generation of freedom fighters and members of the Indian National Army would be invited for national and government festivals. Like the freedom fighters, the funerals of their widows would also be performed with full state honours.
He said that the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi, has ushered in an era of hope and revolution in the direction of building ‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’. With the launch of several historic and unique programmes, India has garnered acclaim at international level. The recent passage of the Goods and Services Tax Bill in the Parliament is a historic step towards tax reforms in the country, which would benefit trade, industry and consumers.
He said that during the last 20 months, the State Government had implemented multi-dimensional policies for equal development of all areas of the State and welfare of every section of the society. With the aim of achieving ‘Antyodaya’ or ‘serving the last man in the queue’, as envisioned by Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhyaya, several new initiatives have been taken. The State has recorded economic growth rate of 8.2 per cent, which is higher than the growth rate of the country.
He said that the e-Governance initiatives taken by the State Government have been appreciated at national level and several awards, including Digital India award have been received by three districts. Various IT initiatives such as Integrated Birth Registration System, Jeevan Praman Application for pensioners, CM window, CM web-portal and achievement of 100 per cent of the target to issue Aadhaar cards in the State, speak volumes about the Government’s efforts. More than 125 e-Services have been launched in the State.
Describing agriculture as the backbone of the economy, he said the Prime Minister had set a target to double the income of farmers by 2022. The State Government has taken several steps to achieve this target. Keeping in view the losses faced by farmers due to crop damage in the last two years, the Government has disbursed Rs 2,331 crore as compensation. The ‘Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana’ launched by the Prime Minister is more farmer-friendly than the earlier such schemes, as it provides cover at the lowest premium ever. Modern technology would be used to estimate losses to ensure speedy settlement of claims. The State Government has also launched this scheme in Haryana and made budget provision of Rs 353.50 crore for 2016-17. Under this scheme, the maximum premium payable by the farmer has been fixed, whereas earlier there was no upper limit on the premium. Premium of two per cent is charged for Kharif crops, 1.5 per cent for Rabi crops and five per cent for horticultural crops. The remaining amount of the premium would be borne by the Central and State Governments. While the premium for cotton crop was fixed at five per cent, keeping in view the interests of the farmers, the State Government has prescribed premium as two per cent and would bear the remaining three per cent.
He said that the attempts being made to mislead the farmers by spreading rumours about the new policy were deplorable. While it is being said that premium is being deducted without the permission of the farmers, in fact, crop insurance schemes were being implemented in the State since 2004 and all earlier schemes were also mandatory for farmers who had taken loans, and these schemes were also implemented at village-level, not farm level.
Urging the farmers to get their crops insured, he said that in this Kharif season, paddy, cotton, bajra and maize crops have been insured and in the upcoming Rabi season, wheat, barley, chana and mustard crops would be insured. The ‘Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana’ is better than all the crop insurance schemes implemented so far and is in the interest of farmers, he added.
The Chief Minister said that with a view to promote horticulture, a horticulture university was being set up in Karnal. The Government has a plan to establish at least one Centre of Excellence for Fruits and Vegetables in each district, and seven such centres have already been established. Apart from this, e-Market platform has been launched under National Agricultural Market scheme, and 54 mandis of Haryana would be connected with this platform. E-Mandi has been launched in grain markets of Karnal and Ellenabad, through which farmers can sell their products to buyers across the country online. More than Rs 47 crore have been spent on development of agriculture and mandis in district Sirsa.
While highlighting various initiatives taken in the Irrigation sector, the Chief Minister said that with a view to provide water to the tail-ends under the vision of ‘Har Khet Ko Pani’, the State Government was committed towards completing the Satlej Yamuna Link (SYL) Canal and to ensure that Haryana gets its legitimate share of Ravi-Beas waters. This case is now in regular hearing in the court. The State is also contributing significantly towards the ‘Namami Gange’ project.
The Chief Minister also highlighted various initiatives taken by the State Government in the fields of electricity generation, industries and investment, road and rail infrastructure, education, skill development, women empowerment, health sector, yoga and ayurveda, sports, rural development and Panchayati Raj Institutions.
Those present on this occasion included Political Advisor to Chief Minister, Mr Jagdish Chopra, Director General of Police, Mr K.P. Singh, Senior BJP leader, Prof. Ganeshi Lal, Chairperson, Women Development Corporation, Mrs. Renu Sharma, Chairperson Haryana Mati Kala Board, Mr. Gurdev Singh Rahi, District BJP President, Mr. Yatinder Singh Advocate and senior officers of the district administration.