Border villages not last but first outpost of India: PM Modi at Mana | India News

DEHRADUN: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday visited the Kedarnath and Badrinath shrines, inspected development works at both places, and laid the foundation of road and ropeway projects worth over Rs 3,400 crore. He also visited Mana, considered the last Indian village at the Sino-India border, and called for a change in perspective.
The PM said Mana is “not the last but the first village of the country … For me, every village at the border is the first village of the country. The people living at the border make for the country’s strong guard.”
Modi reminisced that he had convened a BJP meeting at Mana 25 years ago. “Having to traverse such a great distance in hilly terrain, the decision was frowned upon by party workers. However, I told them, ‘the day you understand the significance of Mana, people will give BJP a permanent place in their hearts’. Now your blessings have sent BJP to office for a second time,” the PM said.
Earlier governments ignored centres of faith: PM
Prime Minister Modi on Friday said people in the hills are tough and hardworking but that doesn’t mean they should be deprived of development and facilities enjoyed by people elsewhere. “Denying them development would be an injustice to their capacity for leading a hard life,” he said in Mana, Uttarkhand.
He performed “rudrabhishek” at the inner sanctum of Kedarnath. He chose to wear a traditional Himachali outfit, cholda dhora, and a pahadi cap at Kedarnath, seen by analysts as a message to neighbouring state which goes to polls soon.
At a public meeting in Mana, Modi drew comparisons between Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh and said both states have “similar problems and solutions”. Mana residents feted the PM for the reconstruction, expansion and renovation of key holy sites, saying his initiatives will lead to the strengthening of the country’s unity. A ‘bhoj-patra’ (citation) was also presented to him.
The PM also laid the foundation for the 9.7-km-long Gaurikund-Kedarnath ropeway. It aims to reduce travel time from Gaurikund (start of the Kedarnath trek) to the shrine from around 7-8 hours currently to half an hour. He also laid the foundation of several infrastructural projects, including the 12.4-km ropeway between Govindghat and Hemkund Sahib among others.
Hitting out at previous governments for “neglecting centres of faith across the country”, Modi said, “Today, Kashi, Ujjain, Ayodhya and many other spiritual centres are reclaiming their lost pride and legacy. From the Ram temple in Ayodhya to Ma Kalika temple at Pavagadh in Gujarat to Devi Vindhyachal Corridor, India is announcing its cultural and traditional upliftment,” he said.

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