Indore: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday hit out at the Congress, alleging that the opposition party’s policy of votebank politics, by way of welfare schemes, was fading.

He highlighted the progress made by the country in four years of National Democratic Alliance (NDA) rule and said his government had built as many houses in four years which would have taken 20 years under the previous United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government.

He said the number of houses sanctioned under the NDA government was three times more than sanctioned during the UPA rule and in the next couple of years, another two crore would be built.

“The Congress’s votebank politics by way of different welfare schemes is fading," he claimed. “Everyone knows that during the Congress’ time, the names of housing projects, their construction and the quality of construction were shrouded in controversies," he alleged.

He said the urban population kept rising but no attention was paid to amenities by the previous regimes. “A huge amount of Rs2.30 lakh crore was allocated for urban infrastructure in the last four years whereas merely Rs95,000 crore was spent for this during the UPA regime," he claimed, adding that the people knew better how much of the money was actually spent.

Modi said a sum of Rs20,000 crore would be invested in seven proposed smart cities in Madhya Pradesh. He said 8.30 crore toilets were constructed in the last four years, and 65 lakh of these were in this state.

On the Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan, he expressed hope the country would achieve cleanliness targets by Gandhi Jayanti next year. He added that the Awas Yojana was generating employment for women and empowering them.

Earlier, Modi launched various urban schemes, worth Rs4713.75 crore, through “e-dedication". This included the PM Awas Yojna, Amrut Scheme, Public Transport Service, Smart City Scheme, Urban Drinking Water Scheme, Solid Waste Management Scheme, Multi-Level Parking, and Sewage and Road development.

He launched these schemes in Indore, Bhopal, Bhind, Sehore, Chhattarpur, Shahdol, Chhindwara, Burhanpur, Katni, Jabalpur, Ujjain, Ratlam, Hoshangabad, Singrauli, Dindori and Dhar districts.

The PM also distributed the Swachh Survekshan 2018 awards in which Indore claimed first position as the country’s cleanest city with Bhopal and Chandigarh taking second and third position.

“Cleanliness cannot be achieved in a day. People remained alert for 24 hours to achieve this target," he said, congratulating Indore residents. Representatives of Vijaywada, Mysore, Greater Mumbai, New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) and Delhi Cantonment were also presented awards by the PM under different categories of Swachh Surveskshan 2018.

The award for the best performing state was given to Jharkhand while Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh bagged second and third place. “For changing the country and society, you need to change people’s mindset. The dream of an open defecation free India is being realised now," he said.

He targeted the Congress and said people should ask their elders about the condition of Madhya Pradesh when that party was in power. The state is slated for Assembly polls later this year and the BJP government, in power for three terms, is facing a formidable challenge from the Congress. The prime minister also viewed an exhibition based on developmental schemes on the occasion.

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