Raman Singh begins rural drive from Maoist heartland

Dantewada (Chhattisgarh), April 18: Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh Wednesday began a much-hyped mega rural drive, ‘Gram Suraj’ of his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government, from the Maoist heartland of Bastar, officials said.

A chopper carrying Singh, chief secretary Sunil Kumar and energy secretary Aman Singh made an unannounced landing on day one of a two-phased 10-day drive at village Kasoli in Dantewada district and then at neighbouring Bijapur district’s Mirtur tribal hamlet.

Singh interacted in detail with locals about the performance of the government’s welfare schemes targeted at rural areas and sanctioned schemes worth crores for road construction on their demand.

Reports coming in from Singh’s home district, Kawardha said that villagers upset by non-implementation of the government’s rural schemes in their villages, held Gram Suraj officials hostage briefly Wednesday.

Officials from the rank of village secretary to the rank of the chief secretary and the chief minister will visit the rural areas from April 18 to April 27 in two phases and will interact with residents at their doorstep to ascertain the status of government’s development schemes and welfare projects.