India celebrates 75th Independence Day with vim & vigor

Announcement of Rs.100 lakh crore infrastructure plans, formation of National Hydrogen Mission to deal with climate change, North East connectivity, welfare of farmers, clean energy, Aatmanirbhar Bharat by hundred years of independence, India’s fight with Covid-19, country’s Olympic performance, among topics touched upon 

In his eighth consecutive Independence Day address, Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the roadmap for the country for the next 25 years, saying “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas and Sabka Prayaas” was very important for the achievement of the nation’s goals.

In a big infrastructural development push, PM Modi announced a Rs 100 lakh crore ‘Pradhan Mantri Gati Shakti National Master Plan.’ He said the initiative, besides bringing employment opportunities for the youth, would help local manufacturers become competitive globally.

“In the coming days, we will launch the PM Gati Shakti Plan, a Rs 100 lakh crore national infrastructure master plan which will set a foundation for holistic infrastructure and give an integrated pathway to our economy,” PM Modi said.

“We will have to work together to manufacture world-class products, using cutting-edge innovation and new age technology,” PM Modi said.

The Prime Minister also highlighted that the world was witness to India’s reforms and “a new chapter of governance.” 

“Political will is required to bring in big changes, big reforms. Today, the world can see that there is no dearth of political will in India. Good and smart governance is needed to bring reforms,” he said.

Wearing a traditional kurta and churidar and his trademark headgear, PM Modi spoke of building “Aatmanirbhar Bharat” when India celebrates 100 years of independence.

“A time comes in the development journey of every country when that nation defines itself from a new end, when it takes itself forward with new resolutions. Today, that time has come in India’s development journey,” PM Modi said.

PM Modi said the next 25 years were ‘Amrit Kaal’ for India and its citizens and it would be the priority of the government to ensure that essential services reach the last person seamlessly.

“The purpose of Amrit Kaal is to better the lives of citizens, lessen the development divide between villages and cities, reduce government interference in people’s lives, and have the latest technology so that we are not behind any country in the world,” PM Modi said.

PM Modi said today India doesn’t need to depend on any other nation for Covid-19 vaccines due to the “strength of our industrialists and scientists.”

“Indians have fought this battle (Covid-19) with a lot of patience. We had many challenges but we worked at an extraordinary pace in every area,” PM Modi said.

“We can proudly say that the largest Covid-19 vaccination program is being run in India today. More than 54 crore people have received vaccine doses so far,” PM Modi further said.

PM Modi also praised doctors, nurses, paramedics and those involved in vaccine-manufacturing and others for their fight against Covid-19.

Jammu and Kashmir and the Northeast region found special mention in PM Modi’s Independence Day speech. PM Modi said a new history of connectivity was being written in the Northeast while development of J&K was visible on the ground.

“Delimitation Commission has been constituted in Jammu and Kashmir and preparations are on for assembly elections in the future,” PM Modi said.

“On the one hand, Ladakh is witnessing the creation of modern infrastructure, while on the other hand, Indus Central University will make Ladakh a center of higher education,” PM Modi said.

On India’s Northeast, PM Modi said the region was becoming connected with Bangladesh, Myanmar, and Southeast Asia.

“Today a new history of connectivity is being written in the Northeast. This connectivity is of hearts as well as of infrastructure. Very soon the work of connecting all the state capitals of the Northeast with rail service is going to be completed,” he said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi also said girls would now be given entry in Sainik schools across the country.

“Many girls have been writing to me and now the government has decided that all Sainik schools will now be opened for our girls,” PM Modi said. At present, 33 Sainik schools are operating in the country.

The prime minister said two-and-a-half years ago, the experiment of admitting girls in Sainik schools was carried out in Mizoram.

Sainik schools are run by the Sainik Schools Society, which is under the administrative control of the Ministry of Defence. The aim of establishing Sainik schools is to prepare the students from an early age for their entry into the Indian armed forces.

At a time when farmers have intensified their protest against the contentious farm laws, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said small farmers were not given enough attention in policies by earlier governments.

“Our mantra is ‘Chhota kisan bane desh ki shaan’. It’s our dream. In the coming years, we will have to increase the collective power of the small farmers of the country. They have to be provided new facilities,” PM Modi said.

Announcing a National Hydrogen Mission in view of climate change, PM Modi said the government would aim to make India a hub for production and export of green hydrogen.

Giving a clarion call to make India self-reliant in energy production, PM Modi said, “Today, we have to pledge to make India energy independent before completing 100 years of Independence. India has moved towards electric mobility and work is underway on 100% electrification of Indian Railways with the aim of becoming a net-zero carbon emitter by the year 2030.”

Lauding the Indian athletes, who were invited for the Independence Day ceremony, PM Modi said “they have not only won our hearts but also inspired future generations.”

“The athletes who have made us proud at the Tokyo Olympics are here amongst us today. I urge the nation to applaud their achievement today,” PM Modi said.



Image courtesy of (Photo: PIB)

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