Quoting the great Malayalam poet Kumaranashan “I am not asking our caste Sister, I ask for water, I am thirsty,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday, February 19 said that development and good governance do not know caste, creed, race, gender, religion or language.
“Development is for everyone and that is the essence of Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas,” Modi said while launching mega projects in Kerala.
Modi sought the support of the people of Kerala to move forward and realise this shared vision of togetherness and development. The Prime Minister inaugurated three major projects in Kerala – the Pugalur – Thrissur Power Transmission Project, Kasaragod Solar Power Project and Water Treatment Plant at Aruvikkara. Apart from this, he also laid the foundation stone of Integrated Command and Control Centre and Smart Roads Project in Thiruvananthapuram.
Launching the programmes through Video Conferencing, Modi said the development works that started on Friday was spread across all parts of Kerala and covered a wide range of sectors. “They will power and empower the beautiful state of Kerala, whose people are making rich contributions to India’s progress,” he said.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Union Ministers of State (IC) for Power New and Renewable Energy Raj Kumar Singh and Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri were also present at the launch and inauguration.
VSC converter technology
Modi said that the 2000 Megawatt Pugalur – Thrissur High Voltage Direct Current system was the first HVDC interconnection of Kerala with National Grid. It will facilitate the transfer of huge quantum of power to meet the growing power demands of the State. This is also the first time that the country gets for the first time a VSC converter technology for transmission, he said. The Prime Minister also expressed happiness that the HVDC equipment used in the project was made in India and gave strength to its AatmaNirbhar Bharat movement.
Modi noted that the gains in solar energy ensured a stronger fight against climate change. The farmers are also connected with the solar sector, he said and added that over 20 lakh solar power pumps were given to farmers under the PM-Kusum Yojana. He also mentioned that India’s solar energy capacity increased 13 times in the last six years.
Noting that India brought the world together through the International Solar Alliance, Modi said “our cities are engines of growth and power houses of innovation.” “Our cities are seeing three encouraging trends: Technological development, favourable demographic dividend and increasing domestic demand,” he said.
Integrated Command and Control Centres
On Integrated Command and Control Centres under the Smart Cities Mission, the Prime Minister said that they helped cities in better urban planning and management. He announced that 54 Command Centre projects have become operational and 30 such projects are at various stages of implementation. “These centres were especially useful during the pandemic days. Under the Smart Cities Mission, the two Kerala Smart Cities – Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram have made significant progress. 27 projects worth Rs 773 crore were completed and 68 projects worth about Rs 2000 crore are in the pipe-line,” he said.
Modi said that AMRUT helped cities expand and upgrade their wastewater treatment infrastructure. Under AMRUT, Kerala gets a total of 175 water supply projects at a cost of more than Rs 1100 crore, he said.
“Aruvikkara Water Treatment Plant inaugurated today cost of Rs. 70 crore. This would improve the lives of around 13 lakh citizens and this will help increase per capita water supply in Thiruvananthapuram to 150 litres per day from 100 litres per day supplied earlier,” he said.