Don’t let reforms be guided by poll-centric moves: PM Modi | India News – Times of India

NEW DELHI/GANDHINAGAR: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday urged BJP mayors not be guided by “election-centric” decisions while pushing for urban reforms and development of their cities. He said people will support “bold and honest” decisions if these are for greater public good and implemented impartially.
Speaking to party mayors from across the country who had assembled at Gandhinagar, the PM said, “Elected representatives should not think just in terms of elections. You cannot develop your city with an election-centric approach. Many times, decisions which are good for the city are not taken just because of the fear that it might result in electoral losses.”
Giving an example, Modi recalled how in 2005, the Gujarat government had started the celebration of the urban development year and one of the issues was to remove encroachment. “When we started, party leaders told me that we had elections ahead and removing encroachment may hurt us in the polls. But I told them there won’t be any change and we needed to win people’s confidence. Initially people were upset. But when we did this with honesty, they came forward. They believed this was being done without any discrimination,” he added.
He also flagged how there is a need to carry out audits of old buildings to prevent fire and building collapse.
Modi also urged the mayors to focus on increasing their own revenue to meet their requirement and for sustainability. He also said there should be more focus on planning in such a way that the burden on the city reduces and satellite townships develop in the surrounding areas. Advising the congregation comprising mayors and deputy mayors to chalk out a 25-year plan, Modi said that even tier 2/3 cities ought to be developed as the next generation is preferring such cities for their businesses.
He said if people have relations with any government on a daily basis it’s the local entities and hence their focus should be on “ease of living” and addressing people’s problems. “When focus on ease of living as the biggest priority, then you get the best result,” Modi told mayors.
The PM also spoke about how the autorickshaw drivers came up with an innovative rickshaw service, named “G-Auto” and now the app-based cab service has become common across the cities.
Stating that massive investments are being channeled into urban infrastructure, Modi said the Metro rail network was less than 250 km in 2014 and has now increased to more than 750 km, while work is going on for another 1,000 km.
Talking about solid waste processing, the PM said, “Prior to 2014, 18% of solid waste was processed. Today 75% waste is processed. But we must rid our cities from mountains of garbage.”

Source link