Modi sets stage for UP battle as govt turns two
POLL PITCH PM promises uninterrupted power to villages, raises docs’ retirement age
SAHARANPUR: Prime Minister Narendra Modi called himself a “UP-wala” and said his government had set the poor on the path to progress as he virtually launched the BJP’s poll campaign for India’s most populous state on Thursday.
At a rally in western Uttar Pradesh’s Saharanpur to celebrate two years of the NDA administration, Modi announced an increase in the retirement age of government doctors to 65, saying the move will bridge a shortage of medical professionals.
“I am a UP-wala... I am your pradhan sewak,” he said. Elections are scheduled in UP early next year.
He also appealed to doctors to
serve poor pregnant women for free on the ninth day of every month, a significant move in a region with poor health indices.
For the better part of the hour-long speech, Modi focussed
on social and pro-poor schemes to woo voters in a state with dismal literacy, health and infrastructure indices.
He promised power to all UP villages and repeated a pledge to double farm incomes by 2022, key promises in a state where over a third of the population lives under the poverty line.