Friday, August 10, 2012


“We have Vision 2020” 

7 months into his tenure as CM, Ramesh Pokhriyal unveils his plans for Uttarakhand to Anil Pandey 

What are your plansfor Uttarakhand?

We have prepared ‘Vision 2020’ to make Uttarakhand a prosperous, ideal and developed state by 2020. The plan focuses on the theme ‘Pahad Ka Pani, Pahad Ki Jawani’, or water and youth of the hills. We will harness the natural resources of the state in an optimal manner. We will also focus on increasing economic activities in the state that will lead to creation of more jobs and increase in GDP. We’ll take education, health facilities, roads, drinking water, power and other basic amenities to every nook and corner of the state. We have invited investors and the response has been very encouraging.

Please elaborate your ‘Water & Youth of the Hills’ scheme.

The state has a capacity to produce at least 40,000 MW of power from hydel projects. Therefore, we have planned to install several hydel power units in the state. The surplus power will be sold to other states. To rope in local talent and provide jobs, we have decided to employ local youths in mini hydel power projects.

But haven’t all these measures failed to check migration from the hills?

No, there is a significant dip in numbers. Expansion of industries and further industrialisation are the key factors for stopping brain drain.

Health is another area of concern. The lack of connectivity and the lack of facilities in small hamlets are the major areas of concern.

The state provides all BPL families free treatment. Keeping in view the specific problems of the hills, the state government has come up with Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhyay Free Healthcare Programme. At present, the programme is run through 90 centres in the entire state. Under this scheme, anybody can dial the prescribed number – 108 – and avail the facility of emergency ambulance service. These ambulances are sort of mobile hospitals. We have saved as many as 82,000 mothers and children .in the last one and a half years.

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