Modi shares platform with Nitish, lays foundation stone of Rs 3,700 cr projects

Mokama (Bihar): Sharing a public platform for the first time after the JD-U and BJP realigned more than two months ago, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said he and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar would take Bihar to new heights of development as he announced that road projects of Rs 53,000 crore were underway or completed in the state.

Addressing a rally at Mokama after laying the foundation stone for four sewerage projects under the Namami Gange programme and four national highway projects, Modi said the state was getting gifts worth Rs 3,700 crore coinciding with festivals of Diwali and Chhath.

Modi said the central and state governments were working diligently to fulfill the dreams of the people of Bihar.

“I am grateful from my heart to Nitishji and his team for all kinds of support to central government schemes. If there are difficulties, he tries to remove them. The state and central government are working shoulder to shoulder and with determination to fulfill the dreams of Bihar and the results are visible,” Modi said.

Referring to the long list of road projects mentioned by Surface Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari in his speech there, Modi said, “so many projects to change the fate of Bihar can be implemented in such a short time, we have shown this.”

He also referred to the demands of projects made by Nitish Kumar in his speech and said the Bihar Chief Minister had an emotional attachment with Mokama as it was part of the seat represented by him in Parliament. Modi said he respects the sentiments.

“I want to assure that the central government will work shoulder to shoulder and with full determination to fulfill the dreams of residents of Bihar,” he added.

Nitish Kumar had realigned with the BJP in July after falling out with the party ahead of 2014 Lok Sabha polls over its projection of Modi as the prime ministerial candidate. The fallout happened after JD-U and BJP had been together in the NDA for almost 17 years.

Modi referred to the large gathering at the rally venue and said the “central and state governments will not let your effort go in waste”.

Without taking names, Modi said there had been people with “demented mindset” who even talked against the need of roads as there were no vehicles to run on them.

He said roads bring prosperity and development and his government had considerably increased the budget under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana and the pace of road construction has been doubled.

Modi also said that Ganga river was inextricably linked to the lives of people and saving it is saving the future generations. He said wholehearted efforts had not been made in the past to clean it.

“If there was no Ganga, I do not know what condition our land would have been in. We did not make adequate efforts. Saving Ganga is saving our future generations. We have to make Ganga clean that will also help in improving its flow. Hence the government is spending crores of rupees in its cleanliness.”

The Prime Minister said cleanliness of the Ganga will also lead to awareness about the need to preserve other rivers, which will save the country from water crisis.

Modi said several trains connecting Bihar with other parts of the country including Gujarat had been started near Diwali and Chatth Puja.

The Prime Minister said that probably so much work in infrastructure has not been done in Bihar in such a short period of time after Independence. “Only works related to road projects of Rs 53,000 crore had either been started or approved. What impact it will have, you can imagine,” he said.

Modi also referred to his government’s efforts to electrify all villages as also homes and provide gas connection to five crore poor families.

He said his government draws a road map on the promises made, mobilises resources and fulfills them.