Modi 3.0 Cabinet Kicks Off with Focus on Expanding Rural Housing Initiatives

The newly formed Modi 3.0 Cabinet is set to hold its inaugural meeting today at 5 pm at the Prime Minister’s residence on 7, Lok Kalyan Marg. According to government sources, a significant agenda item is the approval of two crore additional houses under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Gramin (PMAY-G). This move aims to boost affordable housing for rural India, aligning with the government’s commitment to providing housing for all. In an effort to further support beneficiaries, the Union Cabinet is also expected to increase the assistance provided under PMAY-G by nearly 50 percent. This substantial hike is designed to better address the financial needs of rural residents seeking to build or upgrade their homes.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who took the oath of office for a historic third term on Sunday, will lead the meeting. The swearing-in ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan saw 72 ministers inducted into the new Cabinet. Following the ceremony, BJP President JP Nadda hosted a dinner for the Council of Ministers, marking the beginning of their new term. Earlier in the day, Modi addressed the newly inducted ministers at a tea meeting at his residence. He emphasized the importance of the ‘100-day program,’ urging ministers to hit the ground running and focus on immediate and impactful governance.

The Cabinet is also expected to urge President Droupadi Murmu to convene a session of Parliament soon, aiming to address both Houses in a joint sitting. This move highlights the government’s intention to quickly set legislative priorities for the new term. The PMAY-G initiative was a focal point in Union Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s Interim Budget speech in February. She announced that two crore additional houses would be constructed over the next five years to meet the rising demand for affordable housing in rural areas. In his Independence Day speech last year, PM Modi assured that poor and middle-class citizens living in slums, chawls, and unauthorized colonies would soon have access to home loans from banks at reduced lending rates.

However, the day’s events took an unexpected turn when a viral video captured an animal, allegedly a leopard, casually strolling through the Rashtrapati Bhavan during the oath-taking ceremony. The video shows the animal walking through the grand forecourt of the presidential residence as official proceedings were taking place on stage with BJP MP Durga Das. Social media erupted with reactions to the video. Users speculated whether the animal was indeed a leopard, a cat, or a dog. “Was it a leopard? An ordinary cat? Or a dog?” commented several users. One concerned viewer wrote, “If it’s a cat, it’s fine. If it’s a leopard, then what are the guards doing? This breach, that too in Rashtrapati Bhavan?” Another added, “Seems like a leopard due to the tail and gait. People were fortunate that it passed by peacefully,” another user remarked. Despite this surprising incident, the focus remains on the significant decisions expected from the Modi 3.0 Cabinet’s first meeting, particularly the ambitious expansion of the rural housing scheme, which underscores the government’s commitment to improving the living standards of India’s rural population.

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