President bats for ‘one nation, one election’ in parliamentary address

New Delhi: “Continuous cycle of elections affect pace of development. It’s high time to implement ‘one nation one election’,” said President Ram Nath Kovind.

In his customary address to both Houses of Parliament after the formation of the 17th Lok Sabha at the Central Hall, Ram Nath Kovind said the government was moving ahead to create a strong, secure and inclusive India.

He said, “In this election, the people of the country gave a clear mandate. After the assessment of the government’s first tenure, the people have given it a bigger mandate this time. By doing so, the people have given the mandate to accelerate the development process initiated in 2014.”

On the economic front, the President said, “Inflation is low, fiscal deficit is under control and foreign exchange reserves are rising… India is moving towards becoming the world’s fifth largest economy.”

“In ‘Ease of Doing Business’, India has leap-frogged 65 positions during the past 5 years, from a ranking of 142 in 2014 to 77. Now, our goal is to be among the top 50 countries of the world. With the implementation of GST, the concept of ‘One country, One tax, One market’ has become a reality. Efforts to further simplify the GST will continue.”

Highlighting the measures taken to develop rural India, Kovind said, “Large-scale investments have been made to strengthen rural India. In order to enhance agriculture productivity, an investment of Rs 25 lakh crore will be made in the coming years.”

“Through ‘Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi’, an amount of Rs 12,000 crore has been disbursed to the farmers in just three months. An estimated expenditure of Rs 90,000 crore is likely to be incurred annually on this scheme since every farmer has now been brought in its ambit.”

The President said, “World’s biggest healthcare scheme ‘Ayushman Bharat Yojana’ has been implemented, providing health protection cover to 50 crore poor people. Under this, so far, about 26 lakh poor patients have availed of treatment in hospitals.”

He further said the government strives to make its policy of zero tolerance towards corruption more expansive and effective,

He said, “The world is standing with India on the issue of terror. UN’s declaration of Masood Azhar as global terrorist is the proof.”