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Chhattisgarh News
Is ‘Raman Ke Goth’ corresponding to Modi’s ‘Man Ki Bath’?

By Samuel Mathai

While preaching in the town of Galilee, Jesus Christ said “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

In the like manner, in a direct talk with the people of Chhattisgarh on a live radio show titled “Raman Ke Goth” on Akashvani, Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh said “As the head of the State, I will always be available to you to lessen your burden and wipe out your tears.”

In fact, though the Chief Minister, Raman Singh, was not equating his words with that of Jesus Christ, his show “Raman Ke Goth” certainly seems to be corresponding to the “Man Ki Bath” of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The Chief Minister’s direct talk was relayed on all AIR stations of Chhattisgarh on September 13, from 10:45 to 11:00 in the morning. The Public Relations Department organised the programme.  Moreover, Singh’s radio talk will come live on the second Sunday of every month. He will express his views on the life and times of Chhattisgarh.

In his inaugural address to the citizens of Chhattisgarh he expressed his distress over the scanty rainfall in the State and drought-like situation in some districts. He said he hails from a farmer's family and understands the travails of the hard-working farmers.

In the show, Raman Singh lauded the cultural aspects of festivals 'Akti', 'Savnahi', 'Hareli', 'Pola', and 'Teeja'. He called upon the people's participation in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'Swachch Bharat' mission. He greeted the women folk of Chhattisgarh on the ''Teeja'' festival. He also mentioned Muslim festival ‘Eid-Uz-Zuha’ and wished them Eid Mubarak.

On being queried how he got the idea of having a direct talk-show on Akashvani, Singh said that Chhattisgarh has several remote regions. Bastar itself is bigger in area than Kerala. Forty-four per cent citizens are Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes and 44 per cent area is covered by forests. The population is about two-and-a-half crore and the radio is the best medium to reach the masses. The five All India Radio stations cover 99 per cent of the population in the entire State. He is keen on keeping regular touch with the masses on second Sunday of every month.

To another question he replied about 80 per cent of the population depend on agriculture for their livelihood. Drought-like situation is prevailing in many parts of Chhattisgarh. He called upon the farmers to make full use of irrigation facilities and State Government schemes. The authorities will create job opportunities so that the villagers do not migrate to other states in search of greener pasture.

Raman Singh said that rules have been relaxed to help those in dire straits. Even if 33 per cent crops are damaged, compensation would be paid. Earlier it was 50 per cent. The Reserve Bank of India has relaxed the guidelines to allot compensation to the farmers. Insurance cover is provided to the farmers who have availed loan facilities.

The Chief Minister said, “A State is recognised by its culture. Chhattisgarh is one of the few states which is totally dependent on agriculture. The farmers are busy all over the year with their farm activities. Chhattisgarh has a hoary cultural and traditional past,” he added.

Singh said, “The onset of agricultural season is celebrated as 'Akti', sowing of seeds is 'Savnaahi', growing of crops 'Bhojli' and harvesting of crops 'Hareli'. These are the festivals connected with farming operations. People worship trees, animals, living beings and mother nature. Chhattisgarh has separate distinct identity of its own in the entire country.”

The Chief Minister said that Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Quality Education Mission would help in improving the standard of education in Chhattisgarh. To make the Mission successful people's participation is prerequisite, so that the coming generations can compete with the students of the rest of the country. The schools would be graded as per the results. The rural folks would give their opinion on the quality of studies, presence of teachers in the schools and other aspects. Special Gram Sabhas would be held on 16-17 of every month. He appealed the rural gentry to participate in the Gram Sabhas and express their views on education.

He mentioned Prime Minister Modi's several welfare programmes including the 'Prime Minister's Jan Dhan Yojana and 'Suraksha Beema Yojana. About 80 lakh bank accounts have been opened under the ‘Prime Minister Jan DhanYojana'. The target was 57 lakh bank accounts. About 32 lakh families have been insured under the ''Prime Minister Suraksha Beema Yojana''. The target was 20 lakh families. Singh thanked the citizens of Chhattisgarh in making the schemes a grand success.

The Chief Minister said that the aim of the Swachch Bharat Mission was to make India Clean by 2nd October 2019. “The State is progressing at a rapid pace in this direction. He said when our villages, streets and homes will become clean; Chhattisgarh will become clean and healthy. Panchayats have to play a pivotal role in the Clean Bharat Mission. We will join hands together and make progress in the right direction,” he added.