" Modi telephoned Naidu in the morning to convey his best wishes. He also tweeted:…
New Delhi(Indiatoday): After Congress MP and ex union minister Shashi Tharoor, Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Tuesday praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi.Gogoi praised PM’s ambitious ‘Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana’ (SAGY) but felt it would take more than 50 years to cover six lakh villages in the country.
The comments are significant from a Congress leader coming as they do close on the heels of the controversy surrounding Shashi Tharoor’s praise of Modi, which cost him his job as the Congress spokesperson.
“Modi’s Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana is laudable. However, it would take more than 50 years to cover six lakh villages in the country,” the chief minister’s office said in a release, quoting a tweet by Gogoi.
“The Yojana needs to be taken up in a vigorous manner if we want to see acche din and a clean India,” Gogoi said.
Gogoi had earlier welcomed Modi’s Clean India campaign and took part in a cleanliness operation in Guwahati, following which Modi had praised him.
With a view to developing rural India, Modi had last week launched SAGY, or MP Model Village Scheme, under which he asked each of the around 800 MPs to develop physical and institutional infrastructure of three villages by 2019.
Under SAGY, which was announced by the prime minister in his Independence Day address, MPs will be free to choose any village, but it should not be their own village or that of their in-laws.
If all the MPs adopt three villages each, nearly 2,500 villages will be developed by 2019.
Modi said he will choose a village under the scheme in Varanasi, his parliamentary constituency in Uttar Pradesh.
Gogoi also urged the Centre that small tea growers be allowed to set-up Mini and Micro tea factories within their plantation areas as this would lead to improvement of plucking standards of tea leaves as handling of the leaves would be much less and quality would improve.
Organic cultivation should be encouraged and the Organic Certification cost for small tea growers should be borne by the Tea Board along with introduction of a special scheme for compensation of crop loss during the conversion period from inorganic to organic, he said.
In this context, it was important that the Tea Board should effectively carry out one of its core functions of financial and technical assistance to the unorganised small growers’ sector, Gogoi added.
The Indian tea industry has to be competitive by laying stress on enhancing productivity and quality as well as making it cost effective by using the latest technologies, the chief minister said.