Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas: PM Modi invokes Rajiv Gandhi, attacks Congress over 85 per cent loot

The PM added that during the last four and a half years of is governance, about Rs 5,80,000 crore was transferred to the beneficiaries of various welfare schemes directly to their bank accounts.

Published: 22nd January 2019 02:10 PM  |   Last Updated: 22nd January 2019 05:18 PM   |  A+A-

Pravasi Bharati Diwas

Prime Minister Narendra Modi External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik and others during the inauguration of 15th edition of the Pravasi Bhartiya Divas PBD Convention 2019 in Varanasi Tuesday Jan. 22 2019. | PTI

Express News Service

Facing the opposition firepower over Rafale fighter aircraft deal, Prime Minister Narendra Modi attempted a rebuff to the Congress party by launching a veiled attack on it over the issue of corruption while speaking at 15th Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas which he inaugurated in Varanasi on Tuesday.

Invoking former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, who had lamented the level of corruption in the country by claiming that only 15 paise of a rupee reached the beneficiary and remaining 85 paise were looted by the corrupts in the system, the PM contended that the subsequent governments headed by his party did nothing to stop that loot and leakage of 85 per cent.

“A former prime minister had once said only 15% of what is released from the Centre reaches the beneficiaries. He identified the problem, however, never treated it,” said PM Modi. He said the party ruled for so long and the system that it built for the governance of the country, the then prime minister admitted the problem.

They diagnosed the ailment but did not treat the illness. “Even in the 10 -15 years of rule, thereafter, they did not try to plug the pilferage of 85 per cent of resources,” he observed. “When we came, we stopped that ‘85 per cent loot’ prevalent during the previous government by using advanced technological tools and transferring the money meant for people’s welfare directly to their bank accounts,” he said.

The PM added that during the last four and a half years of is governance, about Rs 5,80,000 crore was transferred to the beneficiaries of various welfare schemes directly to their bank accounts. “Imagine, if the country was being run on the older system, then Rs 4,50,000 crore would have vanished," PM Modi said while addressing the NRIs in his Lok Sabha constituency.

Moreover, he claimed that the NDA government “identified seven crore people who were not present actually but were taking benefit of government schemes. “...They were all living only on paper...This is a glimpse of the change that we have brought in the last four and a half years,” he averred.

Inaugurating the biennial event, PM Modi flanked by chief guest Mauritan PM Pravind Jugnauth, told the delegates from over 120 countries across the globe, that the NDA government during the last four and half years “has changed the way the country was being governed so far.”

“People used to say India cannot be changed, we have successfully changed that thought itself,” Modi said whileclaiming that the country was taking big strides in every sphere from sports to space, healthcare to agriculture, economy and education.

India had emerged as a leader in many fields, said the PM adding: “Not only that we are heard now but also understood by the world out there.”

Praising the role of the NRIs in their respective countries, PM Modi said, “People of Indian origin are in leadership roles in countries such as Mauritius, Portugal and Ireland...I consider NRIs India’s
brand ambassadors. They are the symbols of our capacities and capabilities.” The PM exhorted the delegates that after going back they should to inspire at least five families known to them to
visit India at least once after going back.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the 15th Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas convention in his parliamentary constituency of Varanasi. For the first time, the three-day-long convention is being organised from January 21 to 23 instead of January 9 to allow participants to visit the Kumbh mela in Prayagraj and attend the Republic Day parade in New Delhi.

The theme of this year's convention is 'role of Indian diaspora in building new India', a statement from the prime minister's office said.

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