New Delhi, January 31
President Droupadi Murmu on Tuesday said India, with a stable, fearless and decisive government at the helm, is emerging as a solution-provider to the world and every citizen’s confidence is peaking.
Addressing the joint sitting of both Houses of Parliament in the Central Hall, the President detailed the impact of government efforts and schemes covering SCs, STs, OBCs, women and youth, saying that in the nine years of the BJP rule, people had witnessed many positive changes for the first time ever.
“The biggest change is that today every Indian's confidence is at its peak and the world's outlook towards India has changed. India which once looked at others for solutions to most of its problems, is today emerging as a provider of solutions to the issues faced by the world. In these years, basic amenities have been made available to a large segment of the population who had waited for these for decades,” said the President in her 65-minute speech dotted with frequent applause led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Opposition Aam Aadmi Party and Bharat Rashtra Samithi boycotted the President’s address. All other parties were present. Congress parliamentary party chief Sonia Gandhi attended but leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge was absent, having been stuck in Srinagar due to inclement weather.
In a year when nine states go to polls followed closely by Lok Sabha elections in 2024, the President hailed the people for electing a stable government for two consecutive terms.
“My decisive government has always kept the country's interest paramount and shown the will-power to completely transform the policies and strategies when required. 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. The stable and decisive government has enabled us to deal with the biggest calamity in 100 years and the situation that arose thereafter,” the President said.
She called upon citizens to perform duties to their utmost in 25 years of Amrit Kaal leading to the centenary of Independence, and said India today has a government which respects the honest, attempts permanent solution to problems of the poor and is working at an unprecedented speed and scale.
“The debate today is no longer about policy paralysis but India is being recognised for its rapid development and far-sighted decisions,” said the President describing corruption as the “the biggest enemy of democracy and social justice”.
“Therefore, there has been a relentless fight against corruption in the last few years,” she said, citing an increasing social consciousness that there should be no sympathy for the corrupt in society.
The President said the government had chosen the path of consolidating heritage (virasat) and giving priority to development (vikas).
“Today, on the one hand, Ayodhya Dham is being constructed in the country, while on the other hand, the modern Parliament House is also being built. On the one hand, we have constructed Kedarnath Dham, Kashi Vishwanath Dham and Mahakal Mahalok, on the other hand, our government is also building medical colleges in every district. We are developing shrines; also, India is becoming a major space power in the world,” said the President, noting that all traces of slavery are being shed, as evidenced in the renaming of Raj Path to Kartavya Path and installation of the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose statue along Kartavya Path.
The President said the government had awakened the aspirations of the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes, which were most deprived of the benefits of development.
She listed a range of social and physical infrastructure benefits while stressing “the unprecedented and unparalleled scale of government work”, saying: “After the formation of my government, on an average, 11,000 houses were built every day for the poor in India, under the Aawas Yojana, an average of 2.5 lakh people got connected to broadband every day, over 55,000 gas connections were given daily, loans worth more than Rs 700 crore were disbursed daily.”
She said one medical college came up every month in the last eight to nine years and while only 145 medical colleges opened between 2004 and 2014, 260 medical colleges were started during the tenure of the BJP government from 2014 to 2022.
Overall, the President painted a picture of India’s multifarious development, including how the country was reaping the fruits of ‘Make in India’ and was working to manufacture semiconductor chips and aeroplanes at home.
“Our defence exports have grown six times,” she said, adding that India had emerged as a country connecting today's divided world.
“India is today among the countries that are reinforcing the trust in the global supply chain. Therefore, today, the world is looking towards India with high hopes,” said the President, hailing India’s G-20 presidency and noting that the current phase is the “best phase of India's global relations”.
Noting that the world is acknowledging India’s tough stand on terrorism, the President urged MPs to sink differences and work together in Parliament by setting lofty goals and achieving them and said, “India's democracy was prosperous, strong, and will continue to be stronger in the future.”
With the President’s address the Budget Session of Parliament commenced.
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