Mann ki Baat | OneWeb satellites will enhance rural connectivity: PM Modi

The Prime Minister cited it as a successful example for his government's push for self-reliance.

Updated - October 31, 2022 12:23 am IST

Published - October 30, 2022 03:41 pm IST - New Delhi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi. File

Prime Minister Narendra Modi. File | Photo Credit: PTI

Describing the simultaneous placement of 36 OneWeb satellites in space a week ago as a major feat, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said the move would strengthen digital connectivity across the whole country.

In his “Mann Ki Baat” address, Mr. Modi said, “With the help of this, even the remotest areas will be more easily connected with the rest of the country...India has emerged as a strong player in the global commercial market.”

The Prime Minister said that after the space sector had been opened up for the country’s youth, revolutionary changes had started coming into it. Domestic industries and start-ups were engaged in bringing new innovations and new technologies. Non-government companies were also getting the facility to launch their payloads and satellites through IN-SPACe, he said.

Stating that today’s youth had been exhibiting immense problem-solving skills, Mr. Modi noted that on October 14-15, all 23 Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT) came together on one platform for the first time to showcase their innovations and research projects. Over 75 best projects on themes ranging from healthcare, agriculture, robotics and semiconductors to 5G communications were on display, he said.

Highlighting the significance of Chhath Puja, Mr. Modi said the tradition of sun worship was proof of how deeply Indian culture and faith was related to nature. The festival was celebrated with the cooperation of a myriad of people in society and it also encouraged cleanliness at the community level. “...along with worshipping the sun, why not also discuss his boon! This blessing of Sun God is — ‘solar energy’, we have become one of the largest countries to generate electricity from solar energy,” he said.

Mr. Modi spoke about a farmer from Tamil Nadu’s Kancheepuram who benefited from the Pradhan Mantri Kusum Yojana scheme and had a solar pump set installed on his farm. “Now, they do not have to spend anything on electricity for their farm,” he said, adding that a Kusum Yojana beneficiary farmer in Rajasthan’s Bharatpur had also installed a solar pump and it had increased his income. The farmer was also connecting many other small industries with solar electricity, he said.

Mr. Modi interacted with some residents of the country’s first “solar village”, Modhera in Gujarat, who said that the initiative had brought in great transformation in their lives. “...the day is not far when the construction of Suryagrams in India will become a big mass movement and the people of Modhera village have already begun that,” the PM said.

On the initiatives taken to protect nature and the environment, the Prime Minister said Suresh Kumar, a resident of Bangaluru, had started planting saplings about 20 years ago, which had now grown into 40-feet tall trees. He had also built a bus shelter in Sahakarnagar and presented brass plates written in Kannada among people to promote the language and culture, Mr. Modi said.

A team of tribal women in Anaikatti, Coimbatore, had crafted 10,000 eco-friendly terracotta tea cups for export. “...some villages of Tripura have ascended to the level of Bio-Village 2. Bio-Village 2 emphasises how to minimise the damage caused by natural disasters,” Mr. Modi said.

Referring to National Unity Day, observed on October 31 to mark Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel’s birth anniversary, the Prime Minister said the same sentiment had been seen during the biggest-ever National Games organised in Gujarat a few days ago. Seven new and two indigenous competitions, Yogasan and Mallakhamb, had been included in the event, during which six national records and about 60 National Games records had been created.

Mr. Modi paid tributes to Bhagwan Birsa Munda, whose birth anniversary is on November 15. On Monday, he will be in Mangarh, located on the border of Gujarat and Rajasthan, where a large number of tribal people were massacred by the British in November 1913. “This tribal movement was led by Govind Guru-ji, whose life is an inspiration to everyone. Today, I bow to all those tribal martyrs, and the indomitable courage and valour of Govind Guru-ji,” he said.

On the forthcoming Gurupurab on November 8, the Prime Minister said that throughout his life, Guru Nanak Dev Ji spread light for the sake of humanity. “It is equally pleasant to see the development of the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor after decades of waiting....this day is also Kartik Purnima...I extend warm greetings to all of you on these festivals,” he said.

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