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New Delhi, September 12, 2020
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said schemes like the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY), the government's flagship housing scheme for the poor, and the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, the national cleanliness mission, were playing an important role in changing the lives of rural women.
About 27 welfare schemes of the Central Government were linked to the PM Awas Yojana, he said while addressing the "Grih Pravesham", an event in Madhya Pradesh through video conferencing, where 1.75 lakh families were delivered "pucca" houses under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana -- Grameen (PMAY-G).
Modi said the houses built under the PMAY were mostly registered in the name of the woman or registered jointly along with the woman of the household. New work opportunities were being created for and at the same time, the services of a large number of women masons were being used in the construction work, he said.
The Prime Minister said the families moving into their dream homes would be more confident about the future of their children. They have joined the ranks of the 2.25 crore families who got their own house in the past 6 years. They will now be living in their own house rather than living in a rented house or a slum or a "kutcha" house, he said.
Wishing the beneficiaries a happy Diwali, he said he would have been among them to share their joy if not for the situation arising out of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Today is not only a memorable moment in the lives of 1.75 lakh poor families but also a major step to give a pucca house to every homeless person in the country. While this strengthens the hope of the homeless in the country it also shows how a Government scheme launched with the correct strategy and right intentions reaches the targeted beneficiaries,” he said.
Notwithstanding the challenges during the pandemic, work on 18 lakh houses has been completed throughout the country under PMAY-G. On an average, building a house under PMAY-G takes about 125 days but during this period, it was completed in just about 45 to 60 days which is a record in itself, he said.
This was made possible owing to the migrants returning from cities to their villages. It was a great example of turning a challenge into an opportunity. The migrant labourers were not only able to take care of their families but also build homes for their poor brethren, he added.
The Prime Minister expressed satisfaction that, in several states including Madhya Pradesh, projects worth about Rs 23,000 crores have been completed under the PM Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyan. Under this scheme, homes are being built for the poor in every village works undertaken to provide water supply to every house, buildings for Anganwadis and panchayats, along with cowsheds, ponds, wells etc.
He said that this has led to two benefits. Millions of migrant labourers who returned to their villages from the cities got gainful employment. Several products related to construction like brick, cement, sand, etc. have been sold. Thus, PMGKRA has emerged as a big support for the village economy in difficult times.
While various schemes were launched in the country for decades to build homes for the poor, the goal of providing a dignified life by giving a home to the crores of poor could never be achieved. This was because there was too much interference of the government, lack of transparency and no consultation whatsoever with the actual beneficiary. The lack of transparency in earlier plans led to the poor quality of those houses, he said.
Modi said that, in 2014, the scheme was modified after analysing the past experiences and it was launched as Prime Minister Awas Yojana with a new strategy. The entire procedure, right from selection of beneficiary till handing over the houses, was made transparent.
He said earlier the poor had to run after the government, now the government is reaching the people. He said that scientific and transparent methods were being adopted from selection to manufacturing. Priority was also given to locally available and used goods, from materials to construction. The designs of the houses were also being prepared according to the local needs and style.
Under PMAY-G, there was total monitoring of each phase of the house construction. The money was released in instalments on completion of each stage. The poor were not only getting a house but also toilets, Ujjwala gas connection, Sowbaghya Yojana, power connection, LED bulb and water connection along with it.
Referring to his promise made on the August 15 this year from the ramparts of the Red Fort on the laying of optical fibre cable in around 6,000 villages in the next 1,000 days, Modi said in just a few weeks more than 5,000 kilometres of optical fibre have been laid in 116 districts.
More than 1,250 Gram panchayats were connected with about 19,000 Optical fibre connections and about 15,000 Wi-Fi hotspots provided. When better and faster internet comes to villages, the children of the village will get better opportunities for education and the youth will have better business opportunities.
Today, every service of the government has been made online so that the benefits were also faster. There was no corruption and the villagers do not have to rush to the city for even small work, he added.