By Arun Pratap Singh
Dehradun, 9 Feb: Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari released BJP’s election manifesto, titled Drishti Patra 2022 (Vision Document 2022) at a local hotel here today. Incidentally, the vision document comes just days before the polls. Nitin Gadkari dedicated the Vision Document to the public and claimed that every category of society had been kept in mind. Gadkari also praised the pains taken by the Chairperson of the Manifesto Committee, Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ in preparing the Manifesto.
Gadkari claimed that, over next five years, Uttarakhand would have road infrastructure of the quality of the US and also promised that Auli would be developed into an internationally popular and international quality winter destination which would equal several such top destinations in Switzerland. He also claimed that there is no dearth of funds for development but, in order to achieve it to the best of its potential, Uttarakhand would require a double engine government.
Gadkari reiterated that Uttarakhand was the land of the Gods and brave soldiers. The vision paper was for the development of Uttarakhand. Under the leadership of PM Modi, good work had been done in the country as well as in Uttarakhand. He reminded the media that his ministry had completed projects and works worth Rs 50 lakh crores over the past 7 years. There is no shortage of money in this country, but there is a lack of vision. Modi Government, however, is taking the country ahead with a powerful vision. He added that flights between Dehradun and Delhi might not remain an attractive proposition once the Delhi-Dehradun Expressway is completed, as it would only take 2 hours to reach Dehradun or Haridwar from Delhi. He also added that already, there had been significant reduction in the time taken to travel between Delhi and Dehradun because of the Meerut Expressway, but the Delhi-Dehradun Expressway would reduce the travel time to just two hours.
Gadkari added that before the BJP government came, attention had not been paid to the Ganga. Ganga is the soul of the nation. He had been entrusted the responsibility of the Namami Gange project by the Prime Minister and, now, the Ganga had been made pure and continuous flow of the river had been achieved. Under the Namami Gange project, projects had been taken up in every town adjacent to the river to prevent flow of sewage into it. STP projects were undertaken to prevent this so that Ganga water remained clean and the faith in its sanctity remained intact. He added that weather regularly affected the Char Dham Yatra even in the few months of the Yatra season. After taking over as Union Minister, he appointed consultants from Switzerland to plan An All-Weather Road project. The plan for this Rs 12,500 crores All Weather Road project was prepared at the cost of Rs 825 crores. The work is now in an advanced state and the tunnelling work underway on the Char Dham Project. He also asserted that not a single tree would be cut during the Char Dham Project. All the trees would be uprooted and transplanted. This would give employment to the local youth in the hills.
Gadkari said he had promised his wife he would take her to Kailash Mansarovar from Pithoragarh. The work on 125 out of 140 kms from Tanakpur to Pithoragarh had been completed. The work on 204 km from Pithoragarh to Lipulekh was worth Rs 3100 crores. Here 85 percent of the work had been completed. The plans for Kailash Mansarovar and Char Dham were a gift to Uttarakhand. He added that the Modi Government had made 20 roads where the biggest of the Air Force planes could land. One would be able to fly from Tehri Dam by sea plane. He added that the Modi government had now launched the Parvatmala Yojana to connect many places through ropeways. The DPR for the ropeway of Kedarnath and Hemkund had been prepared. DPR for ropeway was being prepared at five other places. He pointed out that the Irrigation sector had been badly neglected in the country and in Uttarakhand since 1970. However, the Modi Government had now approved Lakhwar and Kishau projects and Uttarakhand would be one of the major beneficiaries of these projects.
Before the release, former CM Nishank and the convener of the manifesto, put forth its special elements. He said that this was the first time in the history of Uttarakhand for such a vision paper to be prepared with the participation of the general public. The BJP had taken suggestions from people after placing suggestion boxes down to the block level.
Nishank said that this vision paper would pave the way to making Uttarakhand an ideal state. He claimed that the Vision Document had also ensured from where the money would come for the promises and projects and schemes being announced. Every region and every section of society had been kept in mind while preparing the document. BJP was promising not only a developed Uttarakhand but also a safe one. Land laws would be brought to stop illegal occupation of land by the land mafia. Schemes had been announced for the welfare of the ex-servicemen. The Kisan Samman Nidhi would be doubled by an equal contribution to be made by the state government. An Ex-Servicemen Credit Guarantee Fund Trust would be formed in the memory of General Bipin Rawat.
Major Promises in BJP Vision Document
1. Stipend of Rs 3,000 per month promised for skill development of unemployed youth.
2. BJP has promised development of Uttarakhand as a hub for manufacture of semiconductors, a very ambitious Government of India project.
3. Affordable rental housing scheme promised for poor people.
4. A large number of infrastructure projects, particularly road projects have been promised in the Vision Document.
5. Char Dham project will be expanded.
6. BJP also promises strengthening of land laws and land records to prevent illegal occupation of land and to prevent misuse of land in Uttarakhand
7. Subsidy up to Rs 10,000 to senior citizens under Mokshada Tirth Yatra Yojana.
8. Haridwar will become the international capital of yoga. Rs 1 crore would be granted for Veda Pathshalas in Haridwar.
9. Law and order will be improved by upgrading and modernisation of the police force.
10. Expansion of health facilities: Medical colleges, mobile hospitals and dialysis centres promised for every district.
11. Additional aid of Rs 8000 promised to the farmers and also a Kisan Mandi has been promised in every block.
12. BJP has promised that Love Jihad will be stopped and to ensure greater safety of women, the number of women police stations will be doubled.
13. BJP has promised that Youth will be linked with self-employment through skill development.
14. BJP has promised expansion of Sports facilities in Uttarakhand.
15. Another promise is the creation of Smart villages.
16. Many schemes have been promised for welfare of the ex-servicemen and their families with special help promised to ex-servicemen to settle in the border areas.
17. BJP has promised development of 45 new Tourism spots in coming five years.
18. BJP has promised that, in Uttarakhand, the Kisan Samman Nidhi of Rs 6,000 per annum being paid by Modi Government would be doubled by the state government by adding its own contribution.
19. Aid of Rs 3,000 promised to the head of the BPL family.