Mumbai: Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari on Saturday said along with smart cities, India also needs ”smart villages”.
He was speaking after inaugurating a statue and memorial of late Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Gopinath Munde at Nandur Shingote in Sinnar taluka of Nashik district.
”Munde led from the front to do justice to farmers….He worked for farmers through schemes such as the Krishna Valley, Tapi Irrigation and Vidarbha Irrigation projects,” Gadkari said.
”While taking forward his legacy, various schemes will have to be implemented for farmers’ children. Farmers should become suppliers of energy along with suppliers of food. There is a need to implement the `smart village’ concept along with the smart city project,” the minister added.
Speaking on the occasion, Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde extolled Munde as the true champion of people’s cause.
”He deserved the epithet ‘Loknete’ (people’s leader) and lived up to it,” Shinde added. The chief minister also assured that farmers who have suffered losses due to the recent unseasonal rains would be paid adequate compensation.
”A huge provision has been made in the budget under the Gopinath Munde Farmers Accident Insurance scheme. Hostels will be set up for the children of sugarcane harvest workers and there will be no dearth of funds for the Sugarcane Workers’ Corporation,” he said.
Union minister of state for health Dr Bharti Pawar, district guardian minister Dada Bhuse, state revenue minister Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil, BJP leaders and late Gopinath Munde’s daughters MP Pritam Munde, Pankaja Munde, MP Hemant Godse, NCP leader Chhagan Bhujbal and Congress leader Balasaheb Thorat were among those present.