PM asks for inputs from Cabinet to improve life in rural India

NEW DELHI: Rural areas and farm sector will now become the new focus area of Narendra Modi government. It’s learnt that the Prime Minister has asked some of the key Cabinet ministers to give their inputs to improve life and economic activities in villages so that a detailed plan can be prepared soon.

Sources told TOI that a small group of senior ministers held long deliberations on the issue with Modi on Thursday night after the Cabinet meeting was over. Those present in the meeting included road transport minister Nitin Gadkari and urban development minister M Venkaiah Naidu.

Sources said that Gadkari has proposed the need to revive the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna (PMGSY) and push it further, which can generate more jobs and improve connectivity to villages. PMGSY was launched by Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

“The meeting went on for hours, almost till midnight. Issues including irrigation, agriculture and rural connectivity were discussed. The detailed plan will be prepared soon and the focus will be to roll out the necessary measures or initiatives after incorporating views from the ministers,” said a source.

He added that more initiatives will be taken to improve the life of farmers, who are still facing major problems due to adverse weather conditions. “The government has increased minimum support price of grains and pulses. Bigger decision will follow in the near future,” the source said.

Sources said that a section in the party feels that the government needs to do more to take the fruits of development to rural India, to add to several government initiatives such as Jan Dhan Yojna, Atal Pension Yojna and Pradhan Mantri Bima Surakshya Yojna targeted at the poor.