20 mil­lion toi­lets built in two years

The Myanmar Times - - World -

PRIME In­dian Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi said yes­ter­day his gov­ern­ment had built more than 20 mil­lion toi­lets and brought elec­tric­ity to thou­sands of vil­lages as he de­liv­ered an In­de­pen­dence Day re­port card.

From the ram­parts of Delhi’s 17th­cen­tury Red Fort, Mr Modi vowed that his ad­min­is­tra­tion was on track to meet its pledge of pro­vid­ing power and toi­lets to ev­ery house­hold across the sub-con­ti­nent.

Mr Modi drew praise in his first Au­gust 15 speech in 2014 as he tack­led of­ten-taboo is­sues such as sex­ual vi­o­lence and a lack of toi­lets, promis­ing to build one for ev­ery house­hold within four years.

“To­day I can say that in such short time, more than 20 mil­lion toi­lets have been built in In­dia’s vil­lages and more than 70,000 are free of open defecation,” he said to loud ap­plause.

Mr Modi has stressed the need to clean up In­dia since storm­ing to power in 2014 and has re­peat­edly urged ev­ery house­hold to have a toi­let to end the spread of dis­ease and ill­nesses such as di­ar­rhoea.

Last year’s speech saw him set a 1000-day dead­line for ev­ery vil­lage

in In­dia to get elec­tric­ity, urg­ing state gov­ern­ments re­spon­si­ble for power to en­sure ev­ery com­mu­nity is fi­nally linked to the na­tional grid.

More than 300 mil­lion peo­ple in In­dia – the world’s fastest-grow­ing ma­jor econ­omy – still had no ac­cess to elec­tric­ity. Per-capita elec­tric­ity con­sump­tion is barely one-third of the global av­er­age.

In a lengthy speech, Mr Modi said he had striven to stream­line In­dia’s reg­u­la­tory regime, in­clud­ing in­come tax fil­ing and pass­port ap­pli­ca­tions, while ex­tolling the eco­nomic growth rate since he came to power.

Photo: AFP

In­dian Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi meets schoolchil­dren after de­liv­er­ing his In­de­pen­dence Day speech from Red Fort in New Delhi yes­ter­day, mark­ing In­dia’s 69th an­niver­sary.

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