Prime Minister Narendra Modi today made an emotional appeal to left-wing extremists to shun violence and join the mainstream of development even as he announced four major projects in Chhatisgarh with total investment of nearly Rs25,000 crore and the potential to bring about a big change in the lives of people in the state.
Addressing a large public gathering at Maoist heartland of Dantewada in mineral-rich Chhttisgarh, the prime minister urged misguided youth to leave their weapons, and spend a few days with children who have lost their parents due to incidents of left-wing extremism.
He said those children would certainly inspire misguided youth to lay down arms forever. He said shoulders of youth should now bear ploughs, rather than guns.
Earlier in the day, the prime minister spoke of his extensive interaction with children of Dantewada, and said that these children had both the dreams and the confidence to achieve them. These children and the state of Chhattisgarh need an atmosphere of peace for realising these dreams, he added.
The prime minister recalled that Punjab had successfully overcome violence, and expressed confidence that Chhattisgarh too would be able to overcome left-wing extremism. He said Chhattisgarh had the potential to emerge as one of the most developed states in India.
The prime minister also witnessed the signing of four agreements between central PSUs and the state government that would result in investments worth Rs25,000 crore in various core sector projects.
The agreements signed today include:
- Between the Chhattisgarh government, NMDC, IRCON and SAIL for construction of a 140km rail line between Rowghat and Jagdalpur, at an estimated cost of Rs2,000 crore;
- Between the union ministry of steel, the government of Chhattisgarh, SAIL and NMDC signing an agreement for construction of a 3 million tonne ultra mega steel plant with an investment of approximately Rs18,000 crore;
- Between the government of Chhattisgarh and NMDC signing an agreement for building a slurry pipeline and 2 million tonnes per annum pellet plant at Nagarnar in Bastar district, with an investment of Rs4,000 crore; and
- Between the government of Chhattisgarh and SAIL for setting up a one-million tonne pellet plant at Dalli-Rajhara, in Balod district with an investment of Rs826 crore.
He said besides the investment of Rs25,000 crore that would flow into the region, as a result of the MoUs signed today, these would bring about a big change in the lives of people.
The prime minister said that employment for youth was the first and foremost requirement of all parts of India, and that his government was working to achieve that goal. He said India had successfully left behind its past of corruption and slow pace of development.
He said the whole world had now recognised India to be one of the fastest growing economies.
The prime minister, who had visited the Livelihood College before arriving for the public meeting, appreciated the initiatives for skill development being taken by the government of Chhattisgarh.