Monday, December 6, 2021

Prime Minister Calls For Celebrations With Caution

Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the people of India through his “Mann ki Baat” programme over the All India Radio network. On the 17th episode of Mann ki Baat 2.O, Prime Minister greeted the people on the festival of Vijayadashami that is Dussehra.  He said, upcoming festivals like Eid, Sharad Poornima, Valmiki Jayanti, followed by Dhanteras, Diwali, Bhai dooj, the Pooja of Chatthi Maiyya and the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev ji too, should be celebrated with caution during this crisis-laden period of Corona. We all have to exercise patience, observe restraint.

Prime Minister observed, when we talk about festivals and make preparations for them, the first thought that strikes us is when to go to the market, what all has to be purchased. The fervour of festivals and the glitter and sparkle of the marketplace are interconnected. Mr. Modi said, this time when we shopping, do remember our resolve of ‘Vocal for Local’. While purchasing items from the market, we have to accord priority to local products.

Amid the gaiety of festivities, we should spare a thought for the lockdown period. During the lockdown, we closely saw the yeoman services of sanitation workers, brothers and sisters working as domestic helps, local vegetable vendors, milkmen, security guards etc. We have now felt the significance of their roles in our lives in a better way. During the moment of crisis, they were with us; they stood by all of us. During the festivities, we must take them along. Prime Minister earnestly urge all to ensure, in whatever way, in making them a part of our celebrations.

Prime Minister urged that we must also think of our braveheart soldiers who are firmly stationed on our borders in the line of duty, even during these festive time. He said, we all have to light a lamp at home in honour of these brave sons and daughters of Mother India. He saluted the sacrifice of those families, whose sons and daughters are on the border.

On local products, Prime Minister said, Khadi has remained a symbol of simplicity over a long period of time but now our khadi is getting known as an eco-friendly fabric. In terms of health, this is a body friendly fabric, an all-weather fabric and now it has also become a fashion statement.

He said, there is a place in Mexico called Oaxaca. Today the khadi of this place has gained popularity by the name Oaxaca khadi. How khadi reached Oaxaca is no less interesting. A young person of Oaxaca, Mark Brown once watched a movie on Mahatma Gandhi. Brown got so inspired by watching this movie on Bapu that he visited Bapu’s ashram in India, understood him and learnt about him in depth. It was then, that Brown realised that khadi was not just a cloth; it was a complete way of life. Brown was deeply moved by the way khadi was intertwined with the rural economy and self-sufficiency. Brown resolved to work on khadi on his return to Mexico.  He introduced the villagers of Oaxaca in Mexico to khadi and trained them. And now Oaxaca khadi has become a brand.

Prime Minister Modi said, this time on Gandhi Jayanti the khadi store in Connaught Place at Delhi witnessed purchases of over one crore rupees in just a day. The khadi masks have also become very popular during Corona. Self-help groups and other such institutions are making khadi masks in many places of the country.

Prime Minister recalled that Sardar Patel devoted his entire life for the unity of the country. He integrated the Indian public with the Freedom Movement. He endeavoured to connect the issues of farmers with Independence. He worked for the integration of the Princely States with our nation. He was invoking the mantra of ‘unity in diversity’ in the mind of every Indian.

Prime Minister Modi in conclusion, recalled how a company that had procured corn from farmers paid not just the cost of the corn but also an additional bonus with it. The farmers were pleasantly surprised. The company shared their extra profits with the farmers. The farmers had a right to it. Mr. Modi observed, the bonus amount might have been small but this initiative is big. This was possible due to the passage of the farm laws.

Prime Minister conveyed his best wishes to all Indians for the forthcoming festivals. However, he urged everyone to wear masks, keep washing hands and maintain two yards of social distance.

Script: Kaushik Roy; AIR: News Analyst

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