This Article is From Aug 02, 2023

PM Modi's ''Empty Coffers'' Swipe At Karnataka Government

The PM said the Congress managed to come to power in the southern state by making populist announcements, but in the process it has jeopardized the people's future.

PM Modi's ''Empty Coffers'' Swipe At Karnataka Government

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said the ruling Congress in Karnataka is "emptying" state coffers for selfish interests and development has come to a standstill in poll-bound Rajasthan, also governed by the party, but in contrast Maharashtra is witnessing an all-round growth.

He said in Karnataka, where the Congress came to power nearly three months ago after ousting the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) from office in the May assembly polls, the Siddaramaiah government has admitted state coffers are empty and there are no funds for development.

The PM said the Congress managed to come to power in the southern state by making populist announcements, but in the process it has jeopardized the people's future.

PM Modi was speaking after flagging off services on two new Pune Metro corridors and inaugurating and laying foundation stones of Rs 15,000 crore worth of development projects in the city during his day-long visit.

"While we are witnessing an all-round development in Maharashtra (where BJP is part of ruling coalition) whatever is happening in neighbouring Karnataka is also in front of us. Bengaluru is a big IT hub, it is a centre of global investment. At this juncture, the fast-paced development of Bengaluru was necessary, but a government was formed by making certain (populist) announcements and its ill-effects are visible in such a short time....this is a matter of concern," he said.

Criticizing the newly-formed Congress government in Karnataka, Modi said "When a party, for its own selfish motives, empties state coffers, the people of the state bear the brunt of it and a question mark hangs on the future of the young generation." "The condition now is such that the Karnataka government is admitting state coffers are empty (and there are no funds) for development of Bengaluru or rest of the state. A similar condition is prevailing in Rajasthan, where the tax burden is increasing and development works are stalled," he said.

Rajasthan will go to the polls, along with the BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh and the Congress-governed Chhattisgarh, by the year-end.

He said to take the country on the path of development, 'niti' (policy), 'niyat' (intention) and 'nishta' (dedication) are necessary elements.

"It is niti, niyat and nishta that determine whether development will take place or not," said the prime minister.

PM Modi said before 2014, when the BJP came power at the Centre, the government had implemented un two housing schemes for the poor in urban and rural areas.

"Under the schemes, only 8 lakh homes were constructed in 10 years (of Congress-led UPA rule from 2004 to 2014) and their condition was such that poor people refused to reside in them. Imagine people living in shanties refusing to move to these houses. In the UPA period, there were around 2 lakh such (sub-standard) houses, where people refused to move," he said.

However, things changed after 2014 when the BJP-led government at the Centre started working with "right niyat" and implemented 'niti' in earnest, and as a result in the last nine years as many as four crore houses were built and given to the poor in urban and rural segments, said the PM.

PM Modi maintained a robust public transport infrastructure is necessary to improve the quality of life of people living in cities. The metro network is being expanded in the country, new flyovers are being constructed and emphasis is being laid on reducing the number of traffic lights.

The prime minister informed that before 2014, the country had only 250km of metro network and most of it was limited to Delhi and areas around it. Whereas today, the metro network has expanded beyond 800km and work is underway for 1,000km of new lines in the country.

Nine years ago, the metro network was limited to only five cities in India whereas today, the mass rapid transport system is functional in 20 cities, including Pune, Nagpur and Mumbai, where services are being expanded, said PM Modi.

“Metro is becoming a new lifeline for cities in modern India," the PM remarked and stressed the need for metro expansion to tackle climate change in a city like Pune.

He emphasised the role of cleanliness in improving the quality of urban life.

Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, the PM pointed out, is not limited to toilet access alone and waste management is also a big focus area.

Mountains of garbage are being removed in mission mode, said PM Modi and explained the benefits of the new waste to energy plant under the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) which he inaugurated during the visit.

The PM said the government is moving ahead with the mantra of the nation's development through growth of the state.

“When Maharashtra will develop, India will also develop. When India will grow, Maharashtra will also reap benefits”, he said.

Referring to India's growing identity as a hub of innovation and start-ups, the prime minister said the country is now home to more than 1 lakh new age firms compared to just a few hundreds nine years ago.

“Cheap data, affordable phones and Internet facilities reaching every village have strengthened the telecom sector. India is among the countries with the fastest rollout of 5G services," said Modi.

He said industrial development of Maharashtra has powered India's growth since independence.

Highlighting the need to further industrial development in the state, the PM said Maharashtra is receiving unprecedented investments in the sector.

For the expansion of Railways, the PM informed, there has been a 12-fold rise in expenditure when compared to pre-2014 years.

The prime minister gave examples of the Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail which will benefit both Maharashtra and Gujarat, the Delhi-Mumbai Economic Corridor, which will connect Maharashtra with Madhya Pradesh and other states in North India.

He also added to the list the National Dedicated Freight Corridor, which will transform the rail connectivity between Maharashtra and North India, and a transmission line network to connect the state with Chhattisgarh, Telangana and other neighbouring states and projects like Aurangabad Industrial City, Navi Mumbai Airport and Shendra Bidkin Industrial Park.

Switching to Marathi during the speech, PM Modi called for working together to build a developed India.

"Our effort is to make your present and your future better, and show resolve to build a developed India. That is why we need to work together. Here in Maharashtra, different parties have come together with this same aim," said the PM in an apparent reference to the Shiv Sena and the NCP (Ajit Pawar faction) joining hands with the BJP to rule the state.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)