I took over as the Chief Minister in different circumstances. I knew there were lots of doubts raised on
whether we would be able to provide effective governance, but having always been with the people, I
was very confident that I would make a difference.
I always keenly followed what was happening in other countries of the world and how leaders there
had made a difference in accelerating the development. I was impressed with how Singapore and
Malaysia had achieved such tremendous progress.
I came with fresh ideas, I knew that we had to seize this opportunity to make a difference to the people,
My main mission was to bring people closer to the administration. This we set out to achieve by moving
the administration closer to the people.
I always kept things simple and listened to the people. The interactions during Janata Darshan helped
us to implement various game changing programmes and I also realized that we had to bring in more
I will briefly explain a few of the key and very simple changes that I felt were absolutely necessary to be
Education: – We all realize the importance of education, it is only education that can improve our lives
and plays a significant part in our country’s progress and I wanted to provide each and everyone access
to education and enable them to be independent,
I knew that the number of high schools and first grade colleges in our state were abysmally low. Every
advanced country has to invest in educating the people. I realized that I had to act fast and towards this
1. 1000 High schools were sanctioned within 1 year.
a. Before this we had only 980 high schools ( from the time we got independence)
2. 536 Pre-University colleges were sanctioned.
3. 289 First Grade Colleges were sanctioned.
Karnataka State Janata Dal Secular IT Wing
This time around, our plan is
To ensure that everyone in our state completes at least Graduate education
We will make heavy investments in pure sciences, – this is very important for us to make
progress as a nation – Also with the potential of our people we can create more scientists
Grama Vastavya: – Another project very close to my heart. The experiences during these village stays
played a very important role in implementing another of our pioneer initiative – Survarna grama yojane.
This was a very good learning experience both for our officials and representatives.
I would like to tell you how we started these village stays – they were not planned. We had floods in the
Krishna basin and there were major repair works that needed to be carried out, I wanted to facilitate
the rehabilitation process and was touring in Athani. I was inspecting the progress and also interacting
with people and by the time we finished our inspections, it was evening. Our officials were worried that
it was late and wanted me to go back to the District Headquarters. We decided that instead of travelling
about 150 kms why don’t we stay back some where nearby. We then decided to go the nearest village
and spend the night there. By the time we reached the house where we were supposed to stay, people
were aware that the Chief Minister was staying in the village and came to meet me. I spent the whole
night talking to people, listening to their ideas. It was a very good experience, whole night we did not
sleep and even the people were happy that the administration was listening to them at their doorsteps.
Next day morning, the news papers were full of this village stay.
I realized the importance of doing this – Along with me the administration also had come to the village.
This helped in resolving issues quickly and efficiently and more importantly for the people they were
being heard locally, gave them the feeling of being part of decision making and this created a very
positive atmosphere all round. Our officials also were enthusiastic in resolving the issues.
The results were encouraging, everyone realized the potential of this mode of governance, I am happy
that I could spend 56 nights in villages with the people as Chief Minister. Personally also I was touched
by the love and affection of everyone.
Another point on the village stay I would like to make is – I tried to bring in a secular touch, We all know
that we still need to do more work towards eradicating caste system especially in some villages. This I
feel is the responsibility of all citizens and leaders, we need to move forward and be inclusive.
I knew the effect of having a CM stay at village had on the administration – The administration usually
follows the chief and we could get things done quickly.
I also had an interesting experience of staying with a family that had 200 members. I knew the
importance of joint family in agriculture and wanted to encourage joint families to preserve agriculture
and I was very happy that this village stay sent out a very positive image.
As I said in the beginning, the initial village stay was not planned,- but these taught us very important
lessons and I tried to maximize the potential of this to ensure that we tried to meet people’s aspirations
Suvarna Grama Yojane – Rural Connectivity Program:
As I have been saying, it was very important for us to reach out to villages, – Majority of our people still
live in the rural areas and we wanted to ensure that all services reached the villages. Our honorable
president of India at that time Sri A P J Abdul Kalam gave us a blue print on how to go about achieving
this. He told me that he was impressed with the way my administration and working, he also said that
he was sure that I was the right person to implement this. I was extremely happy to hear this from our
president who we all know is one of the brightest sons that India has produced. This encouragement
proved that we were on the right track and pushed us to take this to the next level.
We realized that we had to increase the efficiency of our administration, – We set out with a target of
providing basic facilities to the villages –
- One Hospital
- One school
- Drinking Water
- Roads, Hostel
- Taking administration to the village
This was a coordinated effort that brought together different departments to work together.
The potential of this exercise was recognized by all and all the MLAs irrespective of the party lines sent it
requests to extend this program to their constituents.
About 1000 villages (5 from each Taluk) were selected from all regions uniformly across the state,
Sufficient funds (1 crore per village) were promptly provided to this program.
This initiative will be always be close to my heart and I would like to ensure that we continue this further
and make this better.