AGARTALA, Aug 7 - With Assembly elections in mind, Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday announced that altogether 3.5 lakh new LPG connections will be provided in poll-bound Tripura during the next one and half year.
All the new connections will be given free of cost under Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana. As of now, the State has around four lakh LPG connections.
Addressing a well-attended BJP rally to welcome six Trinamool Congress MLAs to the party fold, Pradhan said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given a target that no household is left without LPG connection by 2019. �It is good to announce that 2.60 crore connections have already been given within one and half years against the target of five crore connections�, he said.
Announcing that two more LPG bottling plants will be set up in Dharmanagar and Agartala shortly, Pradhan said the two towns will also get 40 LPG outlets and petrol pumps each.
He said Tripura is not only having huge natural gas reserves, the State is also the biggest producer of bamboo in the country. But there is no scope for value addition to bamboo. �In Assam, the BJP Government plans to set up a plant where fuel will be produced from bamboo at an estimated cost of Rs 1,000 crore�, he said.
The Union Minister, who had extensively visited the State years ago, further said indication for change is quite visible in the State. �The Manik Sarkar-led government could not provide job to seven lakh youths in 25 years of rule though the State has the capacity to produce 80 lakh jobs�, he said.
Pradhan exhorted the Chief Minister to visit Gujarat to have a new concept of development and replicate Gujarat model of development in the State. �There is a need to go for final leg of campaign to oust the Marxist Government to bring a change in the backward State�, he added.
Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said today�s event welcoming six Trinamool Congress MLAs to the saffron brigade is an important development to avoid vertical split in anti-Left vote bank. �With Sudip Roy Barman and five other MLAs joining the party, the Lotus has already bloomed in Tripura Assembly. Now, we will have to convert the six to sixty�, he said.
�If the party is voted to power in the 2018 Assembly elections, the new government will arrange jobs for all�, he promised. Sarma, who was the main architect in bringing the six MLAs to the saffron brigade, said, no one can stop the BJP from ousting the Left Front Government in Tripura.
Sudip Roy Barman, BJP State president Biplab Deb and party prabhari Sunil Deodhar also spoke in the rally.