PM addresses Kisan Samman Sammelan in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh

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The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi addressed the Kisan Samman Sammelan in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh today and released the 17th instalment of Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) through Direct Benefit Transfer amounting to more than Rs 20,000 crores to around 9.26 crore beneficiary farmers. During the program, he also granted certificates to more than 30,000 women from Self Help Groups (SHGs) as Krishi Sakhis. Farmers from all over the country were linked with the event through technology.

Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister greeted the people of Kashi on his first visit after winning the Parliamentary elections from the constituency. He thanked them for choosing him for the third consecutive time. “Now even Maa Ganga seems to have adopted me and I have turned local for Kashi”, said a grateful PM Modi.

The Prime Minister underlined that the recently concluded General Elections for the 18th Lok Sabha symbolize the vastness, capabilities, comprehensiveness and roots of India’s democracy and present it to the world. Noting that more than 64 crore people voted in these elections, the Prime Minister said that an election of such scale does not take place anywhere else, witnessing such immense participation from the citizens. Recalling his recent visit to the G7 Summit in Italy, the Prime Minister pointed out that the the number of voters in India is one and half times more than the number of voters in all G7 nations put together,  and more than two and a half times that the number of voters in all the member countries of European Union. PM Modi highlighted the high participation of women voters amounting to more than 31 crores and said that it is the highest number of women voters in the world, referring to a single nation. He added that it is close to the entire population of the USA. “The power and beauty of India’s democracy not only attracts the entire world but also leaves an impact”, Shri Modi said. The Prime Minister also took the opportunity to thank the people of Varanasi for taking part in the festival of democracy and making it a grand success. “People of Varanasi have not only elected a Member of Parliament but the Prime Minister itself”, PM Modi said expressing his gratitude.

Calling the election mandate ‘unprecedented’ as it returned the elected government for the third time, the Prime Minister said that it is a rare feat among the global democracies. “This kind of hat-trick happened in India more than 60 years ago”, said the Prime Minister, “If in a country like India where youth aspirations are so high, if a government is returned to power after 10 years of reign, it is a massive victory and huge vote of trust. And this trust of yours is my biggest capital and keeps me energized for taking the country to new heights.”

The Prime Minister reiterated the importance that he accords to farmers, narishakti, youth and poor as pillars of developed India and recalled that the first decision of the government after formation was about farmers and poor families. These decisions regarding 3 crore additional households under PM Awas Yojna or instalment of PM Kisan Samman Nidhi will help cores of people, said the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister greeted the farmers present at the venue and linked with the event through technology. And mentioned that 20,000 crore rupees got deposited in the account of the crores of farmers. He also talked about Krishi Sakhi initiative as a strong step in the direction of creating 3 crore ‘Lakhpati Didis’. The initiative will ensure the dignity and assurance of source of income for the beneficiary women, the Prime Minister said.

“PM Kisan Samman Nidhi has emerged as the world’s largest direct benefit transfer scheme”, the Prime Minister said, highlighting that more than Rs 3.25 lakh crores have been transferred into the bank accounts of crores of farmers, where Rs 700 crores have been transferred to the families in Varanasi alone. The Prime Minister lauded the use of technology in taking the benefits to the deserved beneficiaries and also credited the Viksit Bharat Sankalp Yatra which enabled more than 1 crore farmers to register themselves under PM KISAN scheme. He further added that rules and regulations have been simplified to increase accessibility. “Work related to farmer’s welfare takes place at a fast pace when intentions and beliefs are in the right place”, Shri Modi added.

Dwelling upon the role of the agri-ecosystem in making India the world’s third-largest economy in the 21st century, PM Modi stressed the need for a global outlook and urgency for self-reliance in pulses and oilseeds. He also emphasized the need to become a preeminent agri-exporter. He mentioned that local products from the region are finding a global market and export is getting a push through One District One Product Scheme and export hubs in every district. “My dream is that at least one Indian food product should be there on every dining table all over the world”, he added, stressing the Zero Defect-Zero Effect mantra in agriculture too. He also said that through Kisan Samiddhi Kendras, a huge network is being created to support millets, herbal products and  natural farming.

Noting the presence of women in large numbers, the Prime Minister underlined their importance and support in agriculture and mentioned expanding the scope of agriculture to boost their contributions. The Prime Minister highlighted that the Krishi Sakhi program is a step in this direction similar to the Drone Didi program. Underlining the contribution of women as Asha workers and Bank Sakhis, the Prime Minister said that the nation will now witness their capabilities as Krishi Sakhis. PM Modi mentioned granting more than 30,000 certificates to self-help groups as Krishi Sakhis and informed that the scheme which is currently underway in 11 states will connect with thousands of SHGs around the nation and also play a crucial role in creating 3 crore Lakhpati Didis.

The Prime Minister highlighted the devotion of the center and the state government towards the farmers of Kashi and Purvanchal and mentioned Banas Dairy Sankul, Perishable cargo center and Integrated Packaging House. The Prime Minister said, “Banas Dairy has changed the fortunes of farmers and cattle rearers in and around Banaras. Today, this dairy is collecting about 3 lakh liters of milk every day. More than 14 thousand cattle-rearing families of Banaras alone are registered with this dairy. Now Banas Dairy is going to add 16 thousand more cattle rearers of Kashi in the next one and a half years. After the arrival of Banas Dairy, the income of many milk producers of Banaras has increased by up to 5 lakh rupees.”

Throwing light on the work done by the government to improve the income of fish farmers, the Prime Minister mentioned PM Matsya Sampada Yojana and the benefits of Kisan Credit Cards. He also informed about the construction of a modern fish market in Chandauli at a cost of about Rs 70 crores to assist those involved in fish farming in Varanasi.

The Prime Minister expressed happiness that PM Suryaghar Muft Bijli Yojna is thriving in Varanasi. Around 40 thousand local people have registered in the scheme and 2,500 houses have already got solar panels and work is ongoing for 3,000 houses, he informed. This is providing double benefit of zero electricity bill and additional income for the beneficiary households.

Touching upon the work done in the last 10 years towards furthering connectivity in Varanasi and nearing villages, the Prime Minister mentioned the country’s first city ropeway project in Varanasi reaching its final stages, ring road connecting the cities of Ghazipur, Azamgarh and Jaunpur, completion of flyovers in Phulwaria and Chaukaghat, a new look to the Kashi, Varanasi and Cant Railway Stations, Babatpur Airport helping ease air traffic and business, development along the Ganga Ghats, new facilities in Banaras Hindu University, renovated Kunds of the city,  and new systems being developed in various places in Varanasi. The Prime Minister further added that the development of sports infrastructure in Kashi and the new stadium is creating new opportunities for the youth.

Recalling Kashi’s reputation as the capital of knowledge, the Prime Minister also praised the ancient city for becoming a city that taught the entire world about how a heritage city can script a new story of urban development. “The mantra of development as well as heritage is visible everywhere in Kashi. And this development is not only benefiting Kashi. The families from entire Purvanchal who come to Kashi for their work and needs, also get a lot of help from all these works”, said Prime Minister Modi. “With the blessings of Baba Vishwanath, this new saga of development of Kashi will continue uninterrupted”,  Shri Modi concluded.

Governor of Uttar Pradesh, Smt Anandiben Patel, Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Shri Yogi Adityanath, Union Minister for Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Shri Shivraj Singh Chauhan, Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Shri Bhagirath Choudhary, Deputy Chief Ministers of Uttar Pradesh, Shri Keshav Prasad Maurya and Shri Brajesh Pathak and Ministers from Government of Uttar Pradesh were present on occasion among other dignitaries.

Background

After being sworn in as Prime Minister for the 3rd time, PM Narendra Modi signed his first file authorizing the release of the 17th instalment of PM Kisan Nidhi reflecting the commitment of the government towards farmer welfare. In continuation of this commitment, the Prime Minister released the 17th instalment amounting to more than Rs 20,000 crores to around 9.26 crore beneficiary farmers under the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) through Direct Benefit Transfer. So far, more than 11 crore eligible farmer families have received benefits of more than Rs 3.04 lakh crores under PM-KISAN.

The Prime Minister also granted certificates to more than 30,000 women from Self Help Groups (SHGs) as Krishi Sakhis. Krishi Sakhi Convergence Program (KSCP) aims to transform rural India through the empowerment of rural women as Krishi Sakhi, by imparting training and certification of Krishi Sakhis as Para-extension Workers. This certification course also aligns with the objectives of the ‘Lakhpati Didi’ Program.