Prime Minister Narendra Modi, dedicating three petroleum sector projects in Bihar to the nation today, said Nitish Kumar had played a big role in the government's aim towards "a New India and New Bihar". Endorsing Nitish Kumar's leadership in Bihar, Modi said many years ago, though the state was behind in terms of development, it's now one of the frontrunners in terms of infrastructural development.
He said in the past 15 years, Bihar has shown that development happens with the right government, decisions, and policies. He said the JDU-BJP alliance is working for the growth of all sectors in Bihar.
The PM inaugurated three key projects, including Durgapur-Banka section of a pipeline project, LPG bottling plant at Banka, and LPG plant at Champaran, via video conferencing.
The state is heading for Assembly polls this year.
Expressing condolences over the death of former union minister and Bihar leader Raghuvansh Prasad Singh today, PM Modi said his demise has left a void in the political sphere of Bihar as well as the country.
Here are the main highlights of PM Modi's speech
1) PM Modi said a few years ago when a special package was announced for Bihar, much of the focus was put on the state's infrastructure. "I am happy that I have had the privilege of inaugurating the Durgapur-Banka section of this important gas pipeline project," he said.
2) The PM said work on the Jagdishpur-Haldia pipeline project that passes through Bihar has also been completed in March. He added the work on Motihari Amlekhganj pipeline has been completed. The present government has already completed the work on the expansion of Patna LPG plant and Purnia, Muzaffarpur, too, he said.
3) The PM said the country and Bihar have now come out of the era, in which one generation used to see the work start and the other complete. "We have to strengthen this identity, the same culture of new India and new Bihar," he said. He said eastern India, including Bihar, neither lacks capacity nor natural resources but still, the region remained behind in terms of development for decades, primarily due to political and economic reasons.
4) Gas-based industry and petro-connectivity, these seem long and technical terms but have a direct impact on people's lives and on the standard of living. They also create millions of new employment opportunities, he said.
5) He said when CNG and PNG gas is reaching many cities of the country, and the people of Bihar and Eastern India should get them with equal ease. "We have proceeded with this resolve only," he said. "Due to this gas pipeline, big cylinder filling plants are being set up in Bihar. Two new bottling plants with a capacity to fill more than 1.25 billion cylinders every year have been launched in Banka and Champaran today," he said.
6) These gas plants will facilitate districts of Banka, Bhagalpur, Jamui, Araria, Kishanganj, Katihar, East Champaran, West Champaran, Muzaffarpur, Siwan, Gopalganj and Sitamarhi in Bihar, he said.
7) He said today, eight crore poor families of the country have gas connections due to the Ujjwala scheme. In this era of coronavirus, crores of cylinders have been given free of cost to the beneficiary sisters of the Ujjwala scheme. "Lakhs of sisters in Bihar have also benefited, millions of poor families have benefited," said the PM.
8) PM said there was a time when LPG gas connections in Bihar were a sign of affluent people and people had to make recommendations for each gas connection. "Nobody cared for those who were marginalised in the society, were suffering, deprived, backward, and were backward. But now in Bihar, this concept has changed," he said.
9) The PM said there are so many "sons and daughters of Bihar" in the Indian government who are serving the country and bringing positive changes in the lives of others. "You can go to any IIT, you'll find Biharis there," he said. The PM said big centres of education are opening in Bihar now. "Now the number of agricultural colleges, medical colleges, and engineering colleges is increasing in the state," he said.
10) "Everyone knows the situation of electricity in Bihar earlier. Even if electricity came in the villages for two or three hours, it was considered a lot. People living in the city also did not get electricity for more than 8-10 hours. But now villages and cities of Bihar have more electricity than ever," he said.