The annual Rath Yatra of Lord Jagannath in Gujarat has been going on for the past 133 years. Earlier it used to be only in Ahmedabad and today it has spread to entire Gujarat and rath yatras take place in over 110 places. This year the rath yatra was celebrated with devotion in a peaceful and joyful atmosphere.

Those who know Gujarat well say that whenever any religious festival took place in the past there would be talk of violent disturbances. Lord Jagannath’s rath yatra was also one such. If you look at the past history of rath yatra there were at least three to four communal violence occurring every decade (except 2001-2010) at different places of the state. This resulted in curfew that prolonged for months impacting the poor severely. Women and children were the worst sufferers as livelihood was hit immensely. If we look at the decade from 2001-10, not least the rath yatra passing off peacefully; but all festivals have been celebrated peacefully amid joyous bonhomie without a single instance of communal violence had occurred in the entire state of Gujarat. Those who know the history of Gujarat can understand well that this is no small thing.

The 2010 Lord Jagannath Rath Yatra has become the cynosure of all eyes for its religious amity and gaiety. It was simply not about the peace that had prevailed; it was more due to an air of festivity and joy among all religious sections of the people indicating that Gujarat has indeed been moving onto the path of peaceful development. It has become a shining example for other states to follow. Gujarat’s Shanti Yatra, Pragati Yatra and Vikas Yatra are progressing as epitomized by the peaceful Jagannath Yatra.

In the Ahmedabad newspaper Divya Bhaskar’s editorial today (July 14) has clearly captured the true spirit of the people of Gujarat. The same has been translated into English and is available in the link below.

People of Gujarat know very well that, those in the habit of defaming Gujarat, and those who cannot tolerate the development of Gujarat, will never take note of the peace and development of Gujarat. People of Gujarat had never allowed such anti-Gujarat forces to succeed. Gujarat’s march towards progress will continue with the understanding and the wisdom of the people.

See link — 
Editorial in Divya Bhaskar


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Fulfilling Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya ji’s dream of a developed and just India
September 25, 2015

Dear Friends,

Today we bow to Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya ji, on his birth anniversary. This year the occasion is even more special as it marks the beginning of Deendayal ji’s centenary year.

Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya is our inspiration. From his life we learn how an individual completely devoted himself to the wellbeing of the nation and the service of the poor. As a political organiser, his work was legendary. Without getting trapped into the lure for power he continued to work, selflessly.

Deendayal ji gave us the Mantra of ‘Integral Humanism’, which has been our guiding principle. This Mantra of ‘Integral Humanism’ stands out as a clear way of thought firmly rooted in the Indian tradition. ‘Integral Humanism also stands out for its emphasis on decentralization and attaches immense importance to the economic progress of every human being.

When I say that the Government of India is a government for the poor, it is deeply inspired by Deendayal ji’s idea of Antyodaya or serving the very last person in the society. India’s progress is dependent on how quickly we can free our nation from the clutches of poverty and provide every Indian a life of dignity, opportunity and aspiration.

For years, the poor of India figured prominently in rhetoric of politicians but when it came to delivery on the ground, there was a wide gap. Our government has been laser focused on bridging this gap. All our key initiatives, from Swachh Bharat, to ensuring that the poor have bank accounts, to creating a social security and pension framework to 24/7 electricity and housing for all are aimed at bringing a qualitative difference in the lives of the poor. The scope and scale of these initiatives is wide and unprecedented but we are confident that we will complete them and deliver the desired results.

Exactly on this day last year, the ‘Make in India’ initiative was launched. We believe that India is the ideal destination for companies from across the world to invest in. Our demographic dividend is ideally suited to drive this change and make India a hub for manufacturing, cutting edge research and innovation. With industry will come greater employment and learning opportunities for our youth, which will ignite the lamp of progress and prosperity in their lives.

A year on, I am meeting with top business leaders and investors in the United States, building on the ground we had covered last year. Wherever I am travelling, I have seen renewed enthusiasm towards investing in India. We, on our part are doing everything possible to further this spirit. We have made doing business easier, are working to make our tax structures more predictable, stable and competitive. We are simplifying procedures and removing regulations that are unnecessary. We are placing enormous focus on technology as well.

I am confident these efforts will directly benefit the poor of India and provide them the windows of opportunity they deserve.

Today, I will be addressing a UN Summit on adoption of post-2015 Development Agenda. The world is taking note of the menace of climate change and it must be highlighted that the greatest sufferers of the adverse consequences of climate change will be the poor. It is in a way a manifestation of Antyodaya that today the global community, from leaders to individuals and organisations are coming together to find ways to mitigate this adversity. I am hopeful we will draw up a clear roadmap on Climate Change Mitigation and towards Sustainable Development that will directly benefit the poor and the marginalised.

Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya always said, ‘Charaiveti, Charaiveti.’ This was an inspiring call to keep pursuing your mission without being overcome by any obstacles, to establish a system of sacrifice and hardwork. Let us follow the path shown by Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya and work together to fulfil his dream of a developed and just India, where the poorest of the poor is taken care of.



Narendra Modi