NEW DELHI, Aug 7: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on August 7 took a dig at the Congress, saying that there were no concrete efforts made to strengthen Panchayati Raj Institutions in the country, and Jammu and Kashmir is the biggest example where democracy has been established at the ground level after 2019, following abrogation of Article 370.
Modi said that for over four decades after the country’s Independence, the Congress did not get to understand how vital it was to implement the Panchayati Raj system in villages. He was virtually addressing the two-day regional Panchayati Raj council held in Haryana.
“During Congress’s regime, there were no concrete efforts made to strengthen Panchayati Raj Institutions. Maximum work was limited to figures and documents. Jammu and Kashmir is the biggest example. In the year 2019, after Article 370 was abrogated, it was for the first time that elections were held there from the gram panchayat (village) level to the zila (district) level, in which, over 33,000 local public representatives have been elected,” he said “It’s for the first time that democracy has been established there [Jammu and Kashmir] at the ground level. This has come after so many years after the Independence,” he said.
Modi said after this even when a mechanism at the district level was developed it was left to its destiny during the Congress regimes, following which the country’s two third the population that resides in villages were left to struggle for basic amenities such as road, power, water, bank, and house, etc.
“This is the reason that even after seven decades of the country’s Independence, electricity couldn’t reach over 18,000 villages across the country…it was due to Congress and other parties with similar ideology and their corrupt leaders, who had made more than 16 crore rural houses a hub of adjustment,” he said Mr. Modi asserted that the Panchayati Raj system is a strong pillar of Indian democracy.