Leisang in Manipur became the last village to get electricity in India. A village housing around 38 families with a population little more than 200 people finds itself connected to the vast field of opportunities awaiting it. As the first bulb is switched on, a new sense of empowerment and relief was evident on the face of the people. The excitement of the villagers reported in a newspaper sums up the mood in the words of village secretary Lalboi, “That night, none of us, including the children, slept due to the excitement. The children kept running around in the fields. We are very thankful to the government. No words can express how happy we are.” People are celebrating newfound status of their village which can now leap forward to write its own story of development transforming the lives of all the villagers.
Leisang is not alone in feeling this excitement while getting ready to welcome a new future. All the census villages numbering 18,452 are now electrified and now feeling a new sense of empowerment. There was no hope for these villages to get electricity until the Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced from the ramparts of the Red Fort during his Independence Day address to the nation in 2015 that all these villages were going to be electrified within 1000 days. These villages situated in far flung areas, having difficult terrain and connectivity, were left behind in the country’s march to development. As they remained isolated due to their geography, they were pushed down even in the priority list of the government. A sense of hopelessness gripped the inhabitants of these villages who could not see a bright future for themselves in the absence of electricity. The doors of a number of opportunity remained shut for these large number of people which was to be unlocked only by connecting them to the electricity grid of the country. At the normal pace it might have taken years for these villages to get electricity, but it was mainly owing to the special emphasis of the prime Minister that these villages are able to get electricity even before the target period of 1000 days.
The approach of the Prime minister in taking these hitherto neglected villages along in the development journey symbolises the spirit behind the mantra of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas’. The concept of development under this mantra is not only all-embracing and holistic but it also has special focus on the poor, deprived and oppressed sections of the society. BJP has an integral approach towards the comprehensive development of the country and as long as any part or constituents of our nation remains deprived, the journey cannot find its fulfilment in its idea of ‘Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat’. Connecting 18,452 villages to electricity has enabled this hitherto neglected section of society to reap the fruits of development and march along with the country with newly acquired confidence and hope.
While nation is celebrating this unique achievement of our country, a section of opposition led by Congress is indulging in ludicrous criticism making themselves a laughing stock. The Congress should realize that it’s not an achievement of any party but of the entire nation and it should ready itself to join such milestones or it will find itself isolated in these kinds of national celebrations which are sure to increase in the coming days. After connecting all the villages to the electricity grid, the government’s focus has now shifted to provide electricity connection to all the homes which still remains unconnected. It will further revolutionise Indian growth story and transform the lives of millions of people. In the world today, without making electricity available development remains a distant dream. Prime Minister Narendra Modi should be congratulated for taking this visionary initiative to make electricity available to every home while writing a new saga of development in transforming the lives of millions.