As Kerala develops, India will develop faster: PM Modi

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Thiruvananthapuram: “As Kerala develops, India will develop faster,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Tuesday shortly after flagging off the Vande Bharat Express train in Kerala.

He was speaking at an event held at the Central Stadium here.

“The world has already recognised India’s development potential. Expatriates also benefit from India’s development. The central government is of the view that the country will develop through the development of states. The Center is giving great importance to infrastructure development,” the Prime Minister said.

He said the central government lays emphasis on cooperative federalism and believes that if the states develop, it will help in the development of the country.

The PM added that Kerala’s projects including Kochi Water Metro and Digital Science Park are model examples for other states.

“The Water Metro will make transportation in Kochi more convenient at a lower cost. The Digital Science Park can make a huge contribution in the digital sector. With the arrival of the Vande Bharat Express, pilgrimage centers can be reached quickly. Holding the G20 meetings in Kerala has increased the State’s prospects in front of the world,” the Prime Minister said.

Addressing a massive crowd at the stadium, Modi — dressed in a traditional Kerala attire of ‘kasavu’ mundu, shawl and kurta — said many are aware of the economic situations of the countries across the world.

Despite those global headwinds, India has been globally seen as the ‘Vibrant Spot of Development’, Modi, who is on a two-day visit to the southern state since Monday, said.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan greets Prime Minister Narendra Modi after Vande Bharat Express flag off. Photo: Manorama

Most public transportation systems in the country, including the Kochi Water Metro, are made in India, he added.

Global outreach programmes of the central government have benefited Indians living abroad.

The PM said there were several reasons behind the world’s belief in India and these were a decisive government at the Centre, unparalleled investments in the infrastructure development by it, investments for reaping demographic dividend, skilling of youth and the central government’s commitment for ‘Ease of Living’ and ‘Ease of Doing Business’.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi flags off Vande Bharat Express. Photo: Manoj Chemencheri/Manorama

Golden age of Indian railways

“The Indian Railways are passing through a golden age. Compared to the previous government’s allocation, the State’s rail budget has increased by five times,” he added.

The Prime Minister said that work has already begun to modernize three stations in Kerala.

“These are not just railway stations but also transport hubs. Vande Bharat train will facilitate travel from one place to another in Kerala. The semi-high-speed trains will be able to run when the development work in Shoranur region is completed,” he said.

Meanwhile, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan thanked the PM for allocating one Vande Bharat Express train to the State and expressed hope that more were on the way.  

The Prime Minister also announced development projects worth Rs 2,033 crore related to railways. This includes renovation of Thiruvananthapuram Central, Varkala Sivagiri, Kozhikode and Nemam Kochuveli stations with a budget allocation of Rs 1,140 crore. The Prime Minister also initiated the track renovation project to speed up the 366.83 km section of Thiruvananthapuram-Shoranur section. Palakkad-Dindigal railway line electrification work has also kickstarted.

Earlier in the day, the PM flagged off the state’s first Vande Bharat Express train from the Central Railway Station here. The service will connect the state capital with Kasaragod.

(With PTI inputs.)

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