Check graft in welfare schemes, says Prez

President Pratibha Patil has called for the implementation of social welfare schemes of the government in “transparent and corruption free manner”.

In her address to the nation on the eve of Republic Day, the President said the foremost priority of the government should be  removal of poverty, hunger, disease and illiteracy, for which she asserted that “all social welfare programmes must be implemented efficiently.  Agencies involved in the delivery of services should have a strong sense of duty and work in a transparent, corruption-free, time-bound and accountable manner”.

Reminding the government of its responsibilities towards every section of society, the President said education and affordable health services must reach to every section.
“Education must reach every section of our society, as must access to health reach all. We need to expand health services, particularly in rural areas. We need quality medical facilities for our population, which are affordable,” Patil observed.

The President also laid stress on empowering the women and bringing them into national mainstream.

However, in an oblique reference to civil society groups, who had been attacking the government on the issue of the President, said that “negativity” and “rejection” should not be the path for a vibrant country like India.

“There seems to be a tendency to doubt almost everything. Do we not have faith in our own people’s strengths and in our institutions? Can we afford distrust amongst ourselves? Nations are built through great patience and sacrifices. Concord and not discord is the way forward for a country as large as India. All issues, therefore, must be resolved through dialogue and there can be no place for violence. Negativity and rejection cannot be the path for a vibrant country that is moving to seek its,” she said.

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