Prime Minsiter Narendra Modi addressing the ‘Utkarsh Samaroh’ in Bharuch, Gujarat, via video conferencing, in New Delhi on Thursday. (UNI)

BHARUCH, May 12:
Achieving 100 per cent coverage of Government schemes brings an end to discrimination as well as politics of appeasement as it leaves no scope for anyone to indulge in such things, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday.
Due to lack of information, the Government schemes either remain on paper or ineligible people avail their benefits, he said, adding that although the process to reach out to each and every beneficiary was difficult, it was the “only way” to serve the people.
He was speaking via video link at ‘Utkarsh Samaroh’, an event held in Gujarat’s Bharuch city by the district administration to mark 100 per cent saturation of four key schemes of the State Government meant for providing financial assistance to widows, elderly and destitute citizens.
“Hundred per cent saturation of Government schemes ends discrimination and need for a recommendation to get the benefits, because people are confident that they will eventually get the benefit. It also puts an end to appeasement politics because 100 per cent coverage leaves no space for it,” he said.
“Although it is a difficult process to reach out to each and every beneficiary to ensure 100 per cent coverage, it is the only way to serve the people,” the Prime Minister said.
Modi said his Government has been trying to cover each and every eligible beneficiary of welfare schemes ever since he became the prime minister eight years ago.
“Hundred per cent saturation is not merely a figure. This indicates that the Government is sensitive and cares for the people. On the occasion of the completion of eight years of our Government, the country has taken a vow to reach out to 100 per cent beneficiaries,” he said.
Modi said ensuring 100 per cent coverage of welfare schemes was his dream, and added that he would not rest till it was achieved.
He said when the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) formed the government at the Centre in 2014, nearly half of the country’s population did not have the facility of toilets, electricity, bank accounts and vaccination.
Modi said that during the last eight years, his Government was able to achieve 100 per cent saturation in many of the schemes.
“Last eight years of my service to the nation from Delhi (as PM) were dedicated to good governance and welfare of the poor,” he said.
“Once again, we all need to get our acts together to reach out to the needy and give them what they deserve. This is a difficult task and many politicians stay away from doing this. But, I am here to serve the people, not to do politics,” the PM added.
The ultimate goal of scheme saturation is to ensure dignity of the poor, he said.
According to the PM, the social security schemes implemented in the country before 2014 had limited coverage and impact.
“After 2014, the country expanded the coverage of such schemes. Now, nearly 50 crore people are eligible for free treatment up to Rs 5 lakh; crores received life insurance cover, elderly citizens received pension. We also provide toilets, electricity, bank accounts and tap water connections,” the PM said.
“Earlier, it was very difficult for a poor person to get such benefits. But our government changed this scenario and also made improvements in the schemes. We have set new targets and we are achieving them with each passing day” said the PM, adding that his Government has also started providing financial assistance to marginal farmers.
Ahead of his address, Modi interacted with three beneficiaries of these government schemes.
Talking to one Ayyub Patel, a visually-impaired beneficiary who came there with his elder daughter Aliya, Modi became emotional after the girl started crying when she said she wants to become a doctor as she cannot see her father’s condition.
The prime minister asked Patel to fulfil the wishes of his three daughters and contact him in case he faces any difficulty.
He also interacted with two widows – Meena Rathva and Aruna Vasava – who thanked the Government for the financial support in such difficult times.
Modi thanked nearly 100 widows who had prepared a giant rakhi for him. (PTI)

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