Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the first health centre under Ayushman Bharat Scheme here on Saturday.
He also visited Jangala Development Hub, situated in a panchayat that has emerged as a model panchayat. He interacted with local Champions of Change' in this Left Wing Extremism-affected district especially post the launch of Aspirational District programme on January 5.
He inaugurated the first phase of the Bastar Internet scheme under which a 40,000-km-long network of fibre optics cables would be spread across seven districts of the tribal region. The districts are Bijapur, Narayanpur, Bastar, Kanker, Kondagaon, Sukma and Dantewada.
Modi, who is the first prime minister to visit the tribal district of Bijapur, also inaugurated a new rail line and a passenger train between Gudum and Bhanupratapur, bringing north Bastar region on railways' map.
This is the prime minister's fourth visit to Chhattisgarh, where Assembly elections are due later this year. He had visited Dantewada in May 2015, Naya Raipur and Rajnandgaon in February 2016 and Naya Raipur in November 2016.
The prime minister also inaugurated bank branches in seven villages and visited rural BPO centre developed under the India BPO promotion scheme. The BPO centre is provided Internet by the Bastar Internet scheme.
He also laid foundation stones for road and bridge projects worth over Rs 1,700 crore. Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh and Health Minister J P Nadda were also present on the occasion.
Under the Ayushman Bharat Scheme, the government will open 1.5 lakh health and wellness centre by 2022, which will be equipped to treat host of diseases, including blood pressure, diabetes, cancer and old-age illness.
Also under the scheme, the government has prepared the broad contour of the National Health Protection Scheme (NHPS) and the work is on to finalise parameters for identifying beneficiaries and hospital entitlement.
On January 5, Modi had asked officials to devote these coming three months in developing these less developed districts and had said he would like to visit one of these areas which would be well-performing.