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Our govts at Centre & state together have wiped off corrupt image of Jharkhand created by Congress, JMM: Raghubar Das, Jharkhand CM

"Our state govt from 2014 has provided, for the first time in Jharkhand, political stability and administrative vision for people," CM Das said.

, ET Bureau|
Apr 30, 2019, 11.29 AM IST
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"The Modi govt at the Centre and the BJP stage govt together have wiped off the corrupt face of Jharkhand created by the Congress and its allies."
As polling began in Jharkhand on Monday for the four-phase Lok Sabha election, chief minister Raghubar Das told ET in an interview in Ranchi that voters would once again rally behind the BJP because the party’s governments at the Centre as well as the state had together wiped off the corrupt face of Jharkhand created by the erstwhile regimes of the Congress and its allies, even as he dismissed the opposition alliance as a getting together of the discredited on account of panic. Excerpts:

What is your party’s main plank in this election in the state?
The BJP has placed before people the successful and inspiring all round performance of the Narendra Modi government, and contrasted it with the corrupt and scams-ridden Congress-led UPA regimes of 2004-14. Further, our state government from 2014 has provided, for the first time in Jharkhand, political stability and administrative vision for people who were fed up with both the Congress’ toppling games and its corrupt coalition governments. The Modi government at the Centre and the BJP stage government together have wiped off the corrupt face of Jharkhand created by the Congress and its allies. Both Rahul Gandhi-led Congress and (Shibu) Soren-led JMM stand only for family rule and corruption, the twin enemies of democracy.

Have the pacts signed by your government brought in significant investment?
Already investments worth Rs 86,000 crore have reached the ground. Our policies have helped attract investments and brought administrative dynamism and job opportunities in many sectors including textile, food processing and tourism. Works on greenfield SEZ and Smart City projects are on. More investments are in the pipeline. There is also major forward movement in electrification of villages, construction of roads, providing drinking water, skill development, etc.

Sceptics say BJP is facing double incumbency burden of both the central and state governments…
On the contrary, the Modi government and the BJP state government have provided a double-engine boost to the BJP’s campaign in Jharkhand as the people are enthused by the good works done by both the governments.

How do you see the challenge posed by the opposition alliance?
It is the same old discredited players. Earlier they used to call themselves UPA and now they prefer the word Mahagathbandhan (grand alliance). The Congress, JMM, RJD, JVM-P are the parties which were defeated and thrown out by the people of Jharkhand for indulging in corruption, manipulation and maladministration. After seeing the popularity of PM Modi, these parties are in panic. Their alliance is not meant for winning elections but only for their sheer survival.

Wouldn’t your government face the wrath of voters for unemployment, agrarian crisis and alleged starvation deaths?
Our (BJP) governments have put in place many skill development schemes for employment generation, including in tribal belts. We have created state-wide job opportunities for teachers. We are also providing many monetary incentives for students, especially tribals. The state government has supplemented the Centre’s `6,000 annual kisan scheme with its own schemes. The state government has also sent farmers to Israel to learn the techniques of drip irrigation. There have been no starvation deaths, and our implementation of the Centre’s Ayushman (Bharat) scheme and Ujjwala scheme – with the state government providing financial aid for purchasing stoves and first refill – have been widely appreciated.

Your government also faced controversy over attempts to dilute the Land Acquisition Act and Forest Rights Act, and the Chhota Nagpur/Santhal Pargana Tenancy Acts…
Let me make it absolutely clear that all provisions of the Forests Rights Act and Land Acquisition Act are fully intact in Jharkhand – no changes or dilution at all. So are the Chhota Nagpur/Santhal Pargana Tenancy Acts. All that we proposed was relaxation in certain outdated norms for acquiring lands0 for strictly government’s developmental works and welfare schemes by offering all legal and monitory protection to tribals. The opposition’s charges are baseless. It is the (Shibu) Soren family that has violated maximum laws for tribal lands and captured their lands. While the Sorens and Marandi only do politics in the name of tribals, it is our government that has brought development and welfare at the doors of these tribals, even in the remotest areas.

There are mixed reactions to your government’s anti-Maoist drive…
The Modi government has successfully checked the menace of terrorism. In Jharkhand, our government has liberated many Maoist areas. Many Maoists have accepted our government’s policy of surrender, and many of those who didn’t, fell to the bullets of the police. Now roads, electricity and other development works have reached areas which used to be Maoist zones. We know there will be no investment and development in lands infested by terrorism and Maoism.

How do you plan to address the apprehensions of over 55% OBCs about 5% upper castes getting benefits of the central law providing 10% quota?
The state government has set up a mechanism to look into the OBC population and their job ratio and will, if necessary, make suitable changes in the OBC quota provisions as per the finding of this study.

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