After approving the PM-Kisan instalment as the first file since taking over for the third consecutive term, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday released payment of ₹20,000 crore as the 17th instalment (April-July period) to over 9.26 crore farmers, which was due since April. Some farmers received more than one instalment as they could not get them earlier due to KYC issues.

Modi also distributed certificates to over 30,000 self-help groups known as Krishi Sakhis on the occasion. He said the Krishi Sakhi initiative is a strong step in the direction of creating 3 crore ‘Lakhpati Didis’. “The initiative will ensure the dignity and assurance of source of income for the beneficiary women,” he said.

Stressing that PM Kisan Samman Nidhi has emerged as the world’s largest direct benefit transfer (DBT) scheme, the Prime Minister said that more than ₹3.25 lakh crore have been transferred into farmers’ bank accounts since its launch in 2019.

Union Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan set the political tone of the event, which was later echoed by all the speakers.

“Agriculture is the backbone of Indian economy and farmer is its soul and BJP believes that farmer is God and serving farmers is worship of God,” Chouhan said.

Further he also said, “today, Prime Minister has come for the first time after becoming Prime Minister for the third time, so the weather is also changing. Today the weather has become a little pleasant.” Becoming Prime Minister for the third time with such a majority and the mandate given by the people is historic, amazing and unprecedented in itself, he added.

Addressing the gathering Modi said: “The people of Varanasi have not only chosen me as MP for a third time but also as prime minister.” Modi won from Varanasi with a margin of 1,52,513 votes in the 2024 poll, whereas the margin was nearly 4.8 lakh in 2019.

“I consider farmers, women, the youth and the poor strong pillars of ‘Viksit Bharat’...With the blessings of Baba Vishwanath and Maa Ganga, and the immense love of the people of Kashi, I have got the privilege of becoming the country’s ‘pradhan sevak’ for the third time...Now, it seems as if Maa (mother) Ganga has also adopted me, I have become one of this place,” Modi said.

The prime minister mentioned that it is very rare in democratic countries for governments to be elected for a third consecutive term, and he credited the people of India for this decision. Modi asserted that agriculture would play big role in making 21st century India third largest economic power in world.