Jamnagar (Gujarat) [India], Aug 30 : Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday reached out to the people of Gujarat as the state gears up for the next year's assembly polls and said that his learning as the chief minister helped him a lot when he took office in Delhi two years ago.
Prime Minister Modi, who launched the first phase of SAUNI (Saurastra Narmada Avataran Irrigation Yojana) at Sanodara of Jamnagar district, while addressing the gathering recalled his experiences as the Chief Minister of Gujarat and said the farmers can do wonder if they are provided water.
"When I took oath as the Chief Minister of Gujarat, I would tell farmers that what is most important for you is water.
Few people did not like what I said then, they disagreed with me but I remained firm on my stand that water is of prime importance," he added.
Prime Minister Modi also called for water conservation and highlighted his government's initiatives for farmers' welfare.
"We are responsible for the future generations and that is why it is essential to conserve water. The Government of India has taken up many initiatives for the welfare of our farmers. We brought a crop insurance scheme that will help the farmers," Prime Minister Modi said. "The water table of Gujarat which was falling began to rise. Check dams were built in large numbers. Can you imagine, in Kutch earlier our jawans hardly got adequate water. No one imagined agriculture could happen there but it changed," he added. Prime Minister Modi maintained that Gujarat has adopted the "mantra of vikas". "This mantra is going to transform Gujarat. We took up the issue of better road connectivity across India and particularly in the villages," he said.
The Prime Minister said that one must never discriminate between sons and daughters. "We Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao and now the people are adding Beti Khilao," he said. Prime Minister Modi further said the SAUNI project is an initiative that will make every Gujarati proud.
"I am grateful to the Gujarat Government for inviting me to the inauguration of SAUNI project which is of great importance," Prime Minister Modi said.
"All of us should take note of how this project has come through," he added. The 12,000 crore rupees project will fill up nearly 115 dams of Saurashtra region which faces shortage of water for irrigation and drinking purposes.
Saruashtra, which comprises 11 districts, faces drought like situation often and has been reeling under severe water scarcity due to scanty rainfall in the last two years.
This project is considered to be an ambitious one for Prime Minister Modi as it was announced in 2012 when he was the Chief Minister of Gujarat.