India@75 | Modi charts nation's path in I-Day speech

India Prime Minister Narendra Modi address the nation on I-Day. Photo: INA/Twitter
India Prime Minister Narendra Modi address the nation on I-Day. Photo: INA/Twitter

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday paid tributes to freedom fighters and leaders from across the political spectrum for their contribution in the independence struggle and nation-building, including former prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru, Veer Savarkar, Ram Manohar Lohia and others.

Addressing the nation from the ramparts of the Red Fort on the 76th Independence Day, Modi said the citizens of the country are grateful to Bapu (Mahatma Gandhi), Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, Babasaheb Ambedkar and Veer Savarkar who spent their lives on the path of duty.

The nation is also grateful to Mangal Pandey, Tatya Tope, Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev, Rajguru, Chandrashekhar Azad, Ashfaqulla Khan and Ram Prasad Bismil. Many such innumerable revolutionaries shook the foundation of British rule, Modi said.

He said the citizens are proud of the strength of the women of India like Rani Laxmibai, Jhalkari Bai, Rani Chennamma, and Begum Hazrat Mahal. Indian women symbolise sacrifice and struggle, Modi said.

The country also salutes those who not only fought for its freedom but also worked for nation-building after Independence such as Jawaharlal Nehru, Ram Manohar Lohia and Sardar Vallabhai Patel among others, the prime minister said.

"India has been home to great thinkers like Vivekananda, Aurobindo and Rabindranath Tagore," he said.

Modi also paid tributes to Dr Rajendra Prasad, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Syama Prasad Mookerjee, Lal Bahadur Shastri, Deendayal Upadhyaya, Ram Manohar Lohia, Nanaji Deshmukh, Jayaprakash Narayan and Acharya Vinoda Bhave.

The August 15 ceremony is particularly significant this year as it marks the 75th anniversary of India's independence, with the government launching a host of exercises to add to the verve around the celebration. Modi hoisted the national flag and later addressed the nation for the ninth consecutive time.

Key points:

People's aspirations on rise, we can't wait anymore to fulfil them

Be it the Centre or states, governments will have to work to realise the aspirations of the people of the country as they can not wait anymore to see their dreams being fulfilled, Modi said.

An aspirational society is very precious for any country and in India, people's aspirations are on the rise, he added.

5 resolves to make India developed nation by centenary year of Independence

Modi urged people to focus their energy on the five resolutions of making India a developed nation, removing every trace of bondage, taking pride in its heritage, unity, and fulfilling their duties in the next 25 years.

"By the 100th year of Independence, we have to work with the vision of accomplishing what our freedom fighters dreamt of," Modi said.

"I urge the youth to dedicate the next 25 years of their lives to the development of the nation. We will work towards even the development of the entire humanity. That is the strength of India," he said.

Modi said India will have to move ahead with big goals to fulfil the vision of a developed India in the centenary year of its Independence.

"For the next 25 years we need to focus on the five resolves -- developed India, removing every trace of bondage from our mind, taking pride in our glorious heritage, unity, and fulfilling our duties," he said.

"We need to now move with a renewed focus and resolve for the next 25 years, and this can be made possible through the strength and determination of 130 crore Indians."

Modi said the world looked at India with pride and hope, and as a problem-solver. "The world looks at India as a destination where aspirations are met," he said.

The prime minister said a stable government has resulted in fast decision-making which has been noticed around the world.

Fight nepotism and corruption

Modi said the two big challenges before the country are nepotism and dynasty, and corruption, asserting that "we have to fight" against these together.

"We need to give opportunities to those who are talented and will work for the progress of the nation. Talent will be the basis of New India," he said.

"When I talk about nepotism and dynasty, people think I am talking about politics only. No, unfortunately this evil of politics has nurtured nepotism in every institution," Modi said.

He further said that to cleanse every institute of India, opportunities should be given to people who deserve it.

"We need to come together as a society to punish those who have propagated the evil of corruption," he added.

Modi further said the nation shows "anger towards corruption, but not the corrupted".

"Until and unless, people have the mentality of penalising the corrupt, the nation cannot progress at an optimum pace," he said.

Gender equality crucial parameter of unity

Speaking on the significance of a united nation, Modi said India has much to teach the world on the concept of unity which begins with the family structure.

"We should celebrate the diversity of India....At home too, the roots of unity are sowed when both the son and the daughter are equal. If they are not, the mantra of unity cannot reverberate.

"Gender equality is a crucial parameter of unity," the prime minister said.

(With inputs from PTI)

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