President Droupadi Murmu on Tuesday showcased the Modi Government as “stable, fearless, decisive”, and lauded it for giving befitting response to every misadventure on Indian border and keeping national interest supreme.
“From surgical strike to a firm crackdown on terrorism, from a befitting response to every misadventure from LoC to LAC, from abrogation of Article 370 to triple talaq, my Government has been recognised as a decisive Government,” India’s first tribal President said in her over hour-long customary speech to joint session of Parliament.
She also spoke of the Government’s fight against corruption, which, she said, was the biggest enemy of democracy and social justice. India by 2047, she asserted, has to be a country that is self-reliant and fulfils its humanitarian obligations.
“My decisive Government has always kept the country’s interest paramount and shown the willpower to completely transform the policies and strategies when required.
In the backdrop of recent challenges on the borders, the President said “befitting response” was given to every “misadventure from LoC (Line of Control) to LAC (Line of Actual Control)” as she said the Government was laying out the Government’s vision for building a developed India in the next five years.
President Murmu underlined its thrust on ‘virasat’ (heritage) as well as “vikas” (development) saying the Government has worked for all without any discrimination.
In a speech which touched on a range of key issues, she affirmed that India has globally emerged as a country that is “connecting” today’s “divided world” in some form or the other.
Murmu said the world is acknowledging New Delhi’s “tough stand” on terrorism, and described the current phase of India’s global relations as the “best” one.
The President’s speech before the commencement of each Parliament session is an account of government’s performance.
Congress leader Sonia Gandhi, among other Opposition leaders, sat on the designated front row bench in Parliament’s Central Hall during the president’s address as senior leaders of her party remained stuck in Srinagar due to bad weather.
Throughout the Murmu’s speech, the central hall reverberated with thumping of desks by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his party colleagues and MPs.
The President also detailed the number of central welfare schemes which has brought large scale changes in country benefited all, particularly women.
Talking about PM Awas Yojana, the President said women’s self-confidence has received a boost after the houses allotted under the scheme have been registered in their names. The Jan Dhan Yojana has led to a parity between men and women in access to banking services in the country for the first time, she said.
She added that there are more than 80 lakh self-help groups functioning in the country in which about 9 crore women are associated.
“Assistance of lakhs of crores of rupees is being given by the government to these women self-help groups,” she said.
Murmu also highlighted that about 3 crore women farmers are among the beneficiaries of the PM Kisan Samman Nidhi and they have received about Rs 54,000 crore under this scheme.
She said India today has a Government which is committed to removing every obstacle faced by women, and mentioned steps like girls being admitted to Sainik Schools and a majority of women beneficiaries under various state-run schemes.
Giving credence to “Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao” campaign, she said the initiative has brought in a consciousness in the society which has led to a “steady increase in the number of daughters”.
“For the first time in the country, the female population outnumbers the males and the health of women has also improved considerably. Today India has a government which is committed to removing every obstacle being faced by women,” Murmu said.
Murmu said the Government “firmly” believed that lasting peace is possible only when the country is strong politically and strategically, and that is the reason why constant emphasis is being put on the modernisation of the country’s military strength.
The President touched upon India’s ongoing presidency of the G-20, chairship of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) as well as its role in the Quad with a focus on working for peace, stability and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific.
Without making any direct reference to India’s troublesome ties with Pakistan and China, she asserted that “befitting response” was given to every “misadventure from LoC (Line of Control) to LAC (Line of Actual Control)”.
“My decisive government has always kept the country’s interest paramount and shown the willpower to completely transform the policies and strategies when required,” she said.
“From surgical strike to a firm crackdown on terrorism, from a befitting response to every misadventure from LoC to LAC, from abrogation of Article 370 to Triple Talaq, my government has been recognised as a decisive government,” Murmu said.
The world is looking towards India with “high hopes” and it is among those countries that are reinforcing the trust in the global supply, Murmu said, noting that the country’s identity as a nation was immortal in the past, and will remain so in the future as well.
The President said the goodwill that India has generated benefitted it during the crises in Afghanistan and Ukraine, especially in evacuation of Indian citizens from these countries.
“Today the world is also acknowledging India’s tough stand on terrorism. Due to this, India’s voice against terrorism is being heard seriously on every global platform,” she said.
“In October last year, a special meeting of the UNSC Counter-Terrorism Committee was organised for the first time in India. In this too, India made its position clear against terrorism,” Murmu added.
“Under these circumstances, India has emerged as a country that is connecting today’s divided world in some form or the other. India is today among those countries that are reinforcing the trust in the global supply chain. Therefore, today, the world is looking towards India with high hopes,” she said.
Murmu also listed India’s ongoing presidency of influential global grouping G-20, noting that the government does not want to limit it to just one diplomatic programme.
“With the mantra of One Earth, One Family, One Future, India is attempting to find collective solutions to the current global challenges in collaboration with the G-20member countries.
The President said India has expanded its role keeping its national interests paramount and cited New Delhi’s humanitarian aid to Afghanistan and Sri Lanka.
“This is the best phase of India’s global relations. We have strengthened our cooperation and friendship with various countries of the world. On the one hand, we are chairing the SCO this year, and on the other, being a member of the Quad, we are working for peace, stability and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific,” she said.
The President urged people to discharge their duties to the maximum to build in the next 25 years a developed India connected to its past glory and containing every golden chapter of modernity.
“Amrit kaal”, described by the Government as the 25-year period culminating in the centenary of India’s independence, is the time to build an India which is ‘aatmanirbhar’ (self-reliant) and also fulfils its humanitarian obligations, she said.
It will be an India with no poverty and a prosperous middle class and one whose youth and women are at the vanguard of guiding the nation, the president said, amid frequent thumping of desks by lawmakers at the Central Hall of Parliament