Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said that people in Balrampur have given two Bharat Ratnas to the country – Nanaji Deshmukh and Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
"Whenever we will speak of Ram temple in Ayodhya, the contribution of Maharaja Pateshwari Prasad Singh Saheb of Balrampur princely state (erstwhile) will be mentioned. People in Balrampur are connoisseurs, they gave two Bharat Ratna in the form of Nanaji Deshmukh and Atal Bihari Vajpayee," PM Modi said after inaugurating Saryu Nahar National Project in Balrampur.
Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee was first elected to Lok Sabha from Balrampur in Uttar Pradesh. Nana Deshmukh had also represented the seat in the Lower House of Parliament.
In his remarks, the Prime Minister said that the completion of the Saryu Nahar National Project is a testament to "honest intentions and efficient work".
"Proper utilization of the water of the country's rivers, and adequate water reaching the farmers' fields, is one of the top priorities of the government. The completion of the Saryu Canal National Project is proof that when the thinking is honest, the work is also solid," he said.
The Prime Minister also expressed condolences over the tragic death of the country's Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat, his wife and 11 others in a helicopter crash in Tamil Nadu's Coonoor on Wednesday.
"I express my condolences to all brave warriors who died in the helicopter crash on December 8. The demise of India's first CDS Gen Bipin Rawat is a loss to every patriot. He was brave and worked hard to make the country's armed forces self-reliant, the nation is a witness to that," he said.
Speaking at the event Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat said that the way Saryu canal project has been completed, about 63 projects in the country have been completed or are on the verge of completion.
"Saryu canal project was pending for over 40 years, not only this scheme but many schemes were pending. The way Saryu canal project has been completed, about 63 projects in the country have been completed or are on the verge of completion," said the Union Minister.
He further said that this scheme will bring change in the lives of 25 lakh farmers.
"This scheme will bring change in the lives of 25 lakh farmers. An additional 2.5 million tonnes of foodgrains will be produced here. There will be positive change in the lives of farmers of nine districts, through this scheme and Rs 50,000 crore rupees will come to their homes every year" said Shekhawat.
According to an official release, the work on the Saryu Canal project started in 1978 but due to "lack of continuity of budgetary support, interdepartmental coordination and adequate monitoring," it got delayed and was not completed even after nearly four decades.
The Saryu Nahar National Project has been built at a total cost of more than Rs 9,800 crore, of which more than Rs 4,600 crore was provisioned in the last four years. The project also involves the interlinking of five rivers – Ghaghara, Saryu, Rapti, Banganga and Rohini to ensure optimum usage of water resources of the region. (ANI)