New Delhi, May 28, 2014: Former Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh today welcomed his successor and senior BJP leader Gopinath Munde's statement that he would give priority to providing proper sanitation to every household and developing backward districts. The Congress leader, who passionately pushed the issue of sanitation during his stint in the rural development ministry in the UPA government, also termed as "encouraging" Munde's remarks on MNREGA and implementation of Land Acquisition Act.
"I welcome the initial statements of my good friend Gopinath Mundeji, especially his decision to continue my emphasis on sanitation and on using rural development programmes to win the ideological war against Maoists," he said. "I also find his initial remarks on MGNREGA and the new land acquisition law encouraging. His opening remarks show that there is more continuity in our system than is commonly appreciated," Ramesh said.
Munde, who took over the ministry yesterday, had said the Narendra Modi government will restructure UPA's flagship programme MNREGA by linking employment with development in rural areas and "rigorously" implement the new land acquisition law. He had also said that proper implementation of recently enacted land acquisition law and Modi's key electoral plank that every household will be provided sanitation and drinking water will be his priority.
Munde, who is also the Minister for Panchayati Raj and Sanitation, had said the rural job scheme — Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) — will be restructured to ensure development of villages and provide employment to rural poor. "I like this scheme. It is best for villages. Basically, people get employment," the Minister had said about MNREGA — an ambitious Act passed by the UPA-I aiming at enhancing the livelihood security of people in rural areas by guaranteeing 100 days of wage employment in a financial year to a rural household. (Source: PTI)