Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said today's youth and the coming generations should never forget the dreadful period of the Emergency, stating that an attempt had been made to crush the country's democracy.
“It was the month of June (1975) when Emergency was imposed. In that, all the rights were taken away from the citizens of the country. One among those rights was the ‘Right to Life and Personal Liberty’... .at that time an attempt was made to crush the democracy of India. The country’s courts, every constitutional institution, the press, were put under control,” he said during his “Mann Ki Baat” address.
The Prime Minister said the condition of censorship was such that nothing could be printed without approval. “I remember when famous singer Kishore Kumar refused to applaud the government, he was banned. His entry on the radio was done away with. But even after many attempts, thousands of arrests and atrocities on lakhs of people, the faith of people of India in the democracy did not shake…the people of India got rid of the Emergency and re-established democracy in a democratic way,” he said.
Mr. Modi said, “During the Emergency, I had the good fortune to have been a witness; to be a partner in the struggle of the countrymen, as a soldier of democracy.”
The Prime Minister said that close to 200 crore COVID-19 vaccine doses had been administered in the country so far, asking people to take the booster shot after the second dose.
"Precaution dose is also being rapidly administered in the country. If it is time for a precaution dose after your second dose, then you must take this third dose. Make your family members, especially the elderly, take a precautionary dose," he said during his "Mann Ki Baat" address.
Start-ups in space sector
Highlighting the country's recent accomplishments in the space sector, Mr. Modi said one of them was the creation of an agency named In-Space. "Till a few years ago, in our country, in the space sector, no one even thought about start-ups. Today their number is more than a hundred. All these start-ups are working on ideas...Chennai and Hyderabad have two start-ups – Agnikul and Skyroot! These start-ups are developing launch vehicles that will take small payloads into space. Through this, the cost of Space Launching is estimated to come down significantly," he said.
Hyderabad-based Dhruva Space is working on high technology solar panels for satellite deployer and satellites. "I also met Tanveer Ahmed of Digantara, another space start-up, who is trying to map waste in space. I have also given him a challenge that they should evolve work technology, which can solve the problem of waste in space. Both Digantara and Dhruva Space are going to make their first launch from ISRO's launch vehicle on June 30," he said. Astrome in Bangalore is making small and cost-effective flat antennas.
The Prime Minister said about 750 school students, mostly from small towns, were working on 75 satellites in the country.
With regards to the field of sports, Mr. Modi said Olympic gold medalist Neeraj Chopra once again won the gold in Kuortane Games. He broke his own record in javelin throw. “In the recently held Khelo India Youth Games too, our players set many records...12 records have been broken in these games — not only that, 11 records have been registered in the names of female players,” he said, adding that several talents were from very ordinary families.
Stating that in the sports world the dominance of Indian players was now increasing, the Prime Minister said in Khelo India Youth Games, besides disciplines that were in Olympics, five indigenous sports — ‘Gatka’, ‘Thang Ta’, ‘Yogasan’, ‘Kalaripayattu’ and ‘Mallakhamb’ — were included this time. He also applauded Telangana’s mountaineer Poorna Malavath for completing the 7-summit challenge
On the cleanliness drive, Mr. Modi appreciated the efforts of local agencies, voluntary organisations and people in making efforts to clean river Chitte Lui in Aizawl. "Actually, this river and its banks were full of plastic and polythene waste. The organisation working to save the river decided to build a road using the polythene...that is cleanliness and development as well," he said, adding that another such effort was made in Puducherry where organic waste is made into compost and the rest recycled.
Mr. Modi talked about the importance of rain-water harvesting and water conservation, commending a group of chartered accountants who revived a stepwell named "Sultan Ki Baoli" in Rajasthan's Udaipur.
Stating that the famous journey of Lord Jagannath would commence on July 1, the Prime Minister said Jaggannath Yatras were taken out every year in Odisha and several other States. "Ashadha Dwitiya, also known as Ashadhi Bij, marks the beginning of the new year of Kutch on this day. I also wish Happy New Year to all my Kutchi brothers and sisters...," he said, adding that a day before the Ashadha Dwitiya he had started a Sanskrit festival in Gujarat.
"In all the journeys (pilgrimages) that take place in our country, there is no such distinction between poor and rich, high and low...," he said, while mentioning the Yatra of Pandharpur in Maharashtra, the coming Amarnath Yatra, Sabarimala Yatra. "If you too go on such a journey, you will also have a glance of Ek Bharat- Shreshtha Bharat along with spirituality," said Mr. Modi.