Prime Minister Narendra Modi today come out with his development mantra – ‘ Reform to Transform’ ans said reforming to transform, is a marathon, not a sprint.
“The reforms we have undertaken, are of many types. For simplicity, I will classify them as financial, structural and institutional, he said while addressing Delhi Economic Conclave today.
While elabourating financial reforms, the Prime Minister underlined the impact of Jan Dhan Yojna. “ Believe it or not, accounts opened under the Jan Dhan Yojana today have a total balance of almost Rs. 26,000 crores or nearly four billion dollars. Clearly our financial inclusion reform has been transformational. And yet this quiet revolution has hardly been noticed,” he said.
About structural reforms, the Prime Minister highlighted measures taken to reform sectors like agriculture and housing among others. “ There was a tendency to divert subsidised fertiliser for the production of chemicals. A simple but very effective solution is neem-coating of fertiliser which makes it unsuitable for diversion,” Modi said.
“This had been tried on a small scale earlier. We are now moving towards universal neem-coating of urea. This has already saved crores of rupees of diverted farm subsidies. It is an example of how simple reforms can be very effective,” he added.
Another measure of Agriculture sector, the Prime Minister talked about was Soil Health Card which tells every farmer the condition of his or her soil. It enables the farmer to choose the right quantity and mix of inputs. This greatly reduces wastage of inputs and increases crop yield besides protecting the soil. By reducing unnecessary chemical inputs, it is also good for health of consumers. It enables farmers to choose the best crop for their soil. Many farmers have been unaware that their land is actually more suited for a different crop. In economic terms, it is a win-win-win-win. It reduces costs, increases yields, improves the environment and protects the health of consumers. “ Over 140 million soil health cards will be issued, requiring a collection of over twenty-five million soil samples. They will be tested through a nationwide network of nearly 1500 laboratories. About four million samples have already been collected. This too is a reform to transform,” Modi emphasised.
The Prime Minister also highlighted the Sanitation Mission. “Sanitation has languished for years as a poor cousin of health or of drinking water supply. It has often been viewed as a question of budgets and projects and expenditure. Yet, you will all agree that poor sanitation and lack of cleanliness is much more than an issue of health. It touches upon every aspect of our well-being. It is of particular importance to women,” he said.
“If this reform succeeds, as I am confident it will, India would have been transformed,” Modi said.