President Pranab Mukherjee today said containing food inflation will be the topmost priority for the government.
"There would be an emphasis on improving the supply side of various agro and agro-based products. My government will take effective steps to prevent hoarding and black marketing. It will reform the public distribution system, incorporating best practices from the states."
Addressing his first session of both Houses of Parliament after the elections to the 16th Lok Sabha, President Mukherjee said the recent elections marked a turning point in the evolution of the democratic polity.
He said, "The country needed a strong and stable government that could provide effective leadership. Standing here today, I applaud the wisdom of my fellow citizens for having voted for stability, honesty and development in a resurgent India in which corruption will have no place. "
"They have voted for a united, strong, and modern India - 'Ek Bharat - Shreshtha Bharat'. My government will work to fulfill these aspirations; with the involvement of all the 125 crore people of this great country."
The President promised better public amenities and livelihood opportunities in rural areas. "My government is committed to improving the quality of life in our villages, through empowered Panchayati Raj institutions. A substantial part of investment will focus on creating community assets and improving basic infrastructure such as roads, shelter, power and drinking water.
"My government will strive to end the rural-urban divide guided by the idea of Rurban; providing urban amenities to rural areas while preserving the ethos of the villages."
He said the government would increase investment in agriculture, both public and private, especially in agri-infrastructure and will address issues pertaining to pricing and procurement of agricultural produce, crop insurance and post-harvest management.
He also said the government would incentivise the setting up of food processing industries and adopt a National Land Use Policy which would facilitate scientific identification of non-cultivable land and its strategic development.
(Read the full text of President Pranab Mukherjee's first address after the election of the NDA government)