Ensure optimum use of central aid: Manmohan tells Chouhan

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Jhabua(MP), Feb 8 (UNI) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today advised Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led BJP government in Madhya Pradesh to ensure maximum use of centrally sponsored programmes for the upliftment of the poor.

''The government should ensure that the benefits of the development schemes reached the needy'', he said while addressing a public meeting here after laying the foundation stones of two new railway lines costing Rs 1286 crore in the tribal belt in western part of the state.

''There was no shortage of funds for programmes aimed at all round development of the weaker sections'', he said giving details of schemes like National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, National Rural Health Mission, Backward regions grant fund, Horticulture, Watershed Mission and infrastructure development programmes.

The Prime Minister gave special emphasis of the central legislation to grant land ownership right to all forest dwellers and urged the Chief Minister to ensure its strict implementation.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, who also addressed the meeting, urged the Prime Minister to provide liberal central assistance for completing all incomplete projects and to tide over the drought situation.

''Mr Singh had an image as an astute leader committed for development without party barrier'', he said.

Mr Chouhan urged the Prime Minister to provide Rs 24,000 crore as special package to tide over drought in 157 tahsils spread over 37 districts.

While seeking central assistance, he referred to incomplete projects like third track on Bina-Itarsi section, Indore-Manmad railway line, extension of Satna-Rewa line to Mirzapur, guage conversion of Gondia-Jabalpur section, converting the weekly Bhopal-Mumbai train as daily, launching of auto testing track at Pithampur and giving the status of international airport to Indore airport.

UNI PKJ-SP 1540

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