PM directs reboot of ‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’ Programme
In a step to make ‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’ (EBSB) programme a prime campaign, all ministries set to intensify their efforts into the programme and educational instituions reinforcing the concept of ‘unity in diversity’ and ‘national integration’.
‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’–– announced by the PM in 2015 –– is said to be the brainchild of the prime minister, and has been closely monitored by the PMO. At the programme’s review held by the cabinet secretary and principal secretary to the PM on Thursday –– the second such review within a week –– it was decided that steps need to be taken to refashion EBSB as desired by the PM.
It was agreed that all ministries involved in the scheme must intensify their efforts, increase the scale of people-to-people exchanges across states and top educational institutes to reinforce the concept of ‘unity in diversity’ and ‘national integration’.
The cabinet secretary is expected to hold one more review of the programme to keep the pressure up. This will be followed up by a second review by the PM himself, ET gathers.
At a review meeting on October 12, Modi is learnt to have expressed dissatisfaction with the proposals put forward by various ministries and said they were nowhere near what was envisaged. He is learnt to have pointed out that the programme, under implementation since 2016, was still not ‘visible’ on the ground and has had no impact. All ministries involved were asked to rework their plans and come up with better ideas for a ‘high visibility’ campaign.
He is said to have underlined that a mission mode approach towards ‘national integration’ must be undertaken and this must be effected without spending utilising government funds.
The meeting, attended by several secretary-level officials, also saw the PM tick off many of them for failure to come up with worthwhile ideas on the scheme.
EK BHARAT SHRESHTHA BHARAT
The PM announced the plan on October 31, 2015 –– Rashtriya Ekta Diwas –– to commemorate the birth anniversary of Sardar Patel to revive a sense of ‘nationhood’. The PM was keen to bring back into national discourse, the feeling of ‘unity in diversity’ across states through cultural and social exchanges.