Laptop distribution biggest secular, socialist scheme: Akhilesh Yadav

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Thursday said the ambitious laptop distribution scheme of his government was the "biggest secular and socialist scheme" in the state as it was implemented among the masses without any disparity.

PTI| Last Updated: Jun 26, 2014, 22:41 PM IST

Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Thursday said the ambitious laptop distribution scheme of his government was the "biggest secular and
socialist scheme" in the state as it was implemented among the masses without any disparity.
Replying to the debate on budget for 2014-2015 fiscal year which was presented in the Vidhan Sabha on June 20, Yadav targeted the Opposition BSP, saying "earlier they called it (laptop) a toy and now when it has been discontinued they ask as to why the toy has been taken away."

"Laptop distribution was the biggest socialist and secular scheme launched so far in which 15 lakhs laptops were distributed without any discrimination on the basis
of caste, religion or monetary situation," Yadav said, after the ambitious scheme was scrapped by the SP government recently.

"The scheme might has been discontinued but these laptops will remain with 15 lakh families for years and all members will learn to operate them," Yadav said.

The Chief Minister said that after discontinuing the laptop distribution scheme, emphasis would now be on e-books, e-library, e-learning and expansion of internet
facility.

On discontinuation of few popular schemes of his government, including unemployment allowance and kanya vidhyadhan, he said in the next phase stress would be on development of infrastructural facilities, industrial investment and to create job opportunities.

The Chief Minister also said that the discontinued schemes can be revived anytime in future.

Referring to attempts to attract industrial investment in the state, he said after the New Delhi summit, MoUs worth Rs sixty thousand crores have been signed.

Claiming that many companies were interested to invest in the state, the UP CM alleged that had the previous BSP government done something in this direction the situation would have been different in the state.

Giving an account of the various schemes, he said besides expansion of metro in Ghaziabad and Noida, Lucknow metro project is also being started and detailed project reports are being prepared for Varanasi, Agra, Meerut and Kanpur.

The government is also working in the direction of providing 24 hour power supply in the cities and at least 18 hours in the rural areas by 2016, he said.

Reiterating the government`s resolve in improving law and order situation and checking crime against women, he said steps are being taken in this direction with full sincerity and sensitivity.

Taking potshots at the media, he said his (chief minister`s) pictures are shown with news concerning crime against women in the state whereas the case is different in
other states.

However, when the Chief Minister mentioned the NRHM scam in his reply, Leader of Opposition Swami Prasad Maurya (BSP) retorted alleging that SP has given refuge to the former BSP minister BabuSingh Kushwaha.

Maurya also questioned as to why "the biggest socialist and secular scheme of laptop distribution" was shelved and Suresh Khanna (BJP) asked for linking the salary of
MLAs with price index.