PM Narendra Modi slams Congress for project delays

Paradip (Odisha): Blaming Congress for delay in implementation of plans and policies, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said the government is trying to bring a culture of completing projects well in time.

"We are trying to bring a work culture where projects are conceived in time and completed on time. The initiatives have to be futuristic and completed before the designated time period."


Narendra Modi

"Delays shouldn't occur as they affect people," Modi said while addressing a public rally here after dedicating Indian Oil Corp's largest greenfield refinery at Paradip to the nation.

The Prime Minister was of the view that it is not good that tendering, agitations and unnecessary processes delay projects and plans as this affects people.

Attacking the Congress he said," My Congress friends often say it was started by us. I don't relish such ceremonies, rather I would have been happy if the projects were completed 15 years ago (well in time)."

Talking about the Paradip refinery which has a 15 million tonnes annual capacity, he said the foundation stone was laid by former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 2000 and completed again during the NDA government's tenure.

Citing another example of delay in implementation by previous regimes, Modi said, "Around 26 lakh cooking (LPG) gas connections were given in last 60 years in Odisha whereas Dharmendra Pradhan gave 11 lakh connections in one year in the state after he took over as Petroleum Minister. This is the way work should be done."

"For the development of the country, we all -- citizens, bureaucracy, industry and policy makers -- have to give birth to such a culture where projects start on time, progresses within the scheduled time, and finishes within the pre-decided time so that the country gets the benefit, (and) the benefit comes before scheduled time," he said.

The government, he added, was "trying to bring in this change so that there is no serious loss to the exchequer because of delay."

Initiatives have to be futuristic and completed before the designated time period. "Delays shouldn't occur," he said, adding that in the past, ideas originated 50 years back, would take 10 years to put them on paper and conceive, a similar number of years to lay foundation stone and many more years before it is completed," Modi said.

He added that he has asked oil marketing companies to reduce oil import dependence by 2022, the year when India will compete 75 years of Independence, with increase in use of bio fuels like ethanol produced from sugarcane and diesel from Jatropha.

India spent USD 112.7 billion on import of 189.4 million tonnes of crude oil in financial year 2014-15. He said, "We will produce petroleum products from khari (gulf) and jhadi (sugarcane and Jatropha)." The government is promoting skill development, providing finances to youth under the MUDRA scheme and giving incentives under 'Start Up India, Stand Up India' initiative.

"We do not want youth to become job seekers. We want youth to become job creators," he said, adding that under the MUDRA scheme, Rs 1 lakh crore has been given so far. Micro Units Development and Refinance Agency Ltd (MUDRA) is a new institution set up by the government to provide funding to the non-corporate, non-farm sector income generating activities of micro and small enterprises whose credit needs are below Rs 10 lakh.

Modi said Paradip refinery will change the fortune of Odisha as it will create lakhs of jobs. The unit will manufacture 78 crore kg of LPG, 500 crore litres of petrol, 660 crore litre of diesel, 250 crore litre of kerosene and ATF, 27 lakh quintal of sulphur and 120 lakh qunital of petroleum coke.

"You can imagine how much these products will give momentum to economic development," he said. LPG from the refinery will replace firewood in rural households. One hour of cooking on firewood subject rural women to smoke equivalent to 400 cigarettes. "We are trying that the poor get LPG gas cylinders to give them freedom from smoke," he said.

Also, fertilizer plants in the region are being revived to produce urea for farmers, he added. Paradip refinery, he said, has added to the 'Make-in-India' glory as IOC's indigenously developed INDMAX has maximised LPG yield to 44 per cent, the highest in the world.

"LPG production is going to increase. Economy will get a boost at low cost," Modi said.

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