Debobrat Ghose (Bhopal/Raipur)
It was a first-of-its-kind extravaganza in Bhopal, when Shivraj Singh Chouhan, who came at par with the BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate and Gujarat CM Shri Narendra Modi by making a hat-trick, was sworn-in as the CM of Madhya Pradesh for the next five years on December 14.
The jubilation among the crowd and the BJP workers in particular on winning a landslide victory was visible all around the Jamboori Maidan at BHEL township. The stage prepared for the swearing-in ceremony had a capacity to accommodate more than 200 guests.
Immediately after the swearing-in ceremony, Shri Chouhan who was visibly highly charged, launched new schemes and demanded more autonomy for the states. Simultaneously signing the files on the dais itself, the CM announced schemes like rice at Re 1 per kg, constitution of a commission for the middle-class and a scheme meant to link agriculture fields to roads.
The 54-year old CM, who was sworn-in for the third time since 2005 in the presence of luminaries from various fields like LK Advani, Rajnath Singh, Narendra Modi, Sushma Swaraj, Chandrababu Naidu, Raman Singh, Vasundhara Raje, Kumar Mangalam Birla, Anil Ambani, Hindu saints, Muslim clergy, representatives from other faiths, artistes, writers, sportspersons etc, took on the UPA-led Central Government and accused it for discriminating against states and damaging the federal structure.
“Devolution of central taxes for states should be raised to 50 per cent,” Chouhan said, while seeking more autonomy for states. He said the poor in Madhya Pradesh who already buy wheat at Re 1 per kg, would now get rice at the same price. Stating MP to be as a symbol of communal harmony and peace, Shri Chouhan announced 10 lakh and five lakh houses would be constructed for the homeless respectively in rural and urban areas, setting up of a board to promote trade and industries.
Dr Raman Singh announces pro-farmer schemes
'Rice at Re 1 per kg from January 1’—was the announcement made by Dr Raman Singh on December 12, immediately after his swearing-in as the Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh in Raipur.
This announcement is expected to benefit 47 lakh ration cardholders of Chhattisgarh. Dr Singh who has become the CM consecutively for the third time in a row like Shri Shivraj Singh Chouhan said that the farmers who sell paddy at support price would be entitled for a bonus of Rs 300 per quintal and it would be initiated on top priority.
In the presence of galaxy of BJP leaders from across the country, the CM said similar to Tendu leaves, the government would purchase other forest produce from the tribals. “Tackling Maoists insurgency is our top priority,” he said.
Dr Singh said that on the birthday of Shri Atal Behari Vajpayee on December 25, we would launch ‘Atal Bima Yojna’ to provide insurance cover to Chhattisgarh’s 17 lakh agricultural labourers.
(The writer is a New-Delhi-based journalist, who writes on various issues on Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. He can be reached at [email protected])