Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance of Singapore Mr. Heng Swee Keat called on Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi earlier today.
Deputy Prime Minister Keat conveyed regards of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Minister Emeritus Goh Chok Tong. Prime Minister Modi recalled his productive meetings with them and requested Deputy Prime Minister Keat to convey his best wishes to them.
Prime Minister Modi also expressed his appreciation for the participation of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in the special event to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi at the United Nations in New York last month.
Deputy Prime Minister Keat pointed to the transformative steps taken by Government of India, and noted the consequent enhancement in investment opportunities, particularly in India’s infrastructure sector. He also highlighted the increasing cooperation between India and Singapore in the technology sector, including FinTech.
Prime Minister Modi expressed happiness at growing investment and trade relations between the two countries. He stated that the launch of RuPay Card and BHIM app in Singapore has greatly enhanced the ease of financial transactions. He also noted the successful organization of the second Joint Hackathon in Chennai with participation of Singaporean students. He highlighted that all these developments symbolizes the close community, business and innovation partnership between the two countries.
My dear countrymen, Namaskar. We are connecting once again today for Mann Ki Baat. Two days later, the month of December is commencing…and with the onset of December, we psychologically feel “O…the year has concluded!” This is the last month of the year and one starts sketching out plans for the New Year. This month itself, the country also celebrates Navy Day and Armed Forces Flag Day. All of us know that on the 16th of December, the country is also celebrating the golden jubilee of the 1971 War. On all these occasions, I remember the country’s Armed Forces…I remember our brave hearts. And especially, I remember the brave mothers who give birth to such bravehearts. As always, this time too, I have received numerous suggestions from all of you on the Namo App and MyGov. Considering me to be a part of your family, you have also shared your lives’ joys and sorrows. In that, there are many young people; students as well! I really feel good for the fact that this Mann Ki Baat family of ours is continually growing…connecting with hearts and connecting through goals too. And our ever deepening bonds are creating a surge of a flow of constant positivity within us.
My dear countrymen, Ojaswi from Sitapur has written to me that he enjoys discussions touching upon the Amrit Mahotsav, a lot. He listens to Mann Ki Baat with his friends and is continuously trying to know and learn more about the Freedom Struggle. Friends, the Amrit Mahotsav, along with learning, also inspires us to do something for the country. And now, throughout the country, whether it’s common folk or governments; from Panchayats to Parliament, the resonance of the Amrit Mahotsav is palpable…programmes in connection with the Mahotsav are going on successively. One such interesting programme was held in Delhi recently. In the programme, ‘Azadi Ki Kahani – Bachchon Ki Zubani’, children narrated stories connected with the Freedom Struggle from the core of their hearts. The special element in that was – along with India, students from Nepal, Mauritius, Tanzania, New Zealand and Fiji too participated in that activity. Our country’s Maharatna, ONGC too is celebrating the Amrit Mahotsav in a slightly different manner. These days, ONGC is organizing study tours to oil fields for our students. In these tours, youth are being imparted knowledge on ONGC’s Oil Field Operations…with the objective that our budding engineers be able to contribute their bit to nation building efforts with full zest and fervor.
Friends, keeping in view the contribution of our tribal communities in attaining Freedom, the country has also celebrated the ‘Janajati Gaurav Saptah’. Across different regions of the country, programmes related to that were held. In the Andaman-Nicobar archipelago, people from tribal communities such as Jarwa and Onge vibrantly displayed their culture. Miniature Writer Ram Kumar Joshi ji from Una, Himachal Pradesh too has done some remarkable work…on tiny postage stamps, he has drawn outstanding sketches of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose and former Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri. On the word ‘Ram’ written in Hindi, a brief biography of both the great men has been inscribed. Some friends from Katni, Madhya Pradesh have conveyed information on a memorable Dastangoi, story-telling programme. In that, memories of the indomitable courage and sacrifice of Rani Durgavati have been rekindled. One such programme took place in Kashi. A three-day Festival was organized in honour of illustrious luminaries such as Goswami Tulsidas, Sant Kabir, Sant Ravidas, Bharatendu Harishchandra, Munshi Premchand and Jaishankar Prasad. In different periods, all of them played a major role in fostering public awakening in the country. You might be aware…in the last episodes of Mann Ki Baat, I had referred to three competitions – one was on writing patriotic songs; one on drawing Rangolis on events connected with patriotic fervor and the Freedom movement and one on scripting lullabies that nurture dreams of a grand India in the minds of our children. I hope that you certainly must have sent in your entries too for these competitions…you must have made plans as well…you must have discussed it among friends too! I hope you will promote this programme in every corner of India with wholehearted enthusiasm.
My dear countrymen, in this discussion, I now straightaway take you to Vrindavan. It is said about Vrindavan that it is a tangible manifestation of God’s love. Our saints too have remarked: “Yeh aasa dhari chitta mein, yeh aasa dhari chitta mein Kahat jathaa mati mor Vrindavan sukh rang kau, Vrindavan sukh rang kau Kaahu na payau aur”
Meaning, We all refer to the glory of Vrindavan, according to our own capabilities…but the inner joy of Vrindavan, its inherent spirit…nobody can attain it in its entirety…it is infinite. That is exactly why Vrindavan has been attracting people from all over the world. You will find its mark in every corner of the world. There is a city in Western Australia – Perth. Cricket lovers must be well acquainted with the place since cricket matches are often held there. In Perth, there is an art gallery called Sacred India Gallery. This gallery has been set up in the beautiful region of Swan Valley and it is the result of the efforts of a resident of Australia Jagat Tarini Dasi ji. Jagat Tarini ji is actually an Australian…born and brought up there, but she came to Vrindavan and spent more than 13 years here. She says that though she returned to Australia…came back to her own country…but she could never forget Vrindavan. That’s why, in order to stay spiritually connected with Vrindavan, she created Vrindavan in Australia itself. Making her art a medium, she set up a marvelous Vrindavan.. People who come here get an opportunity to view myriad artefacts. They get to see glimpses of the most famous pilgrimage centres of India – the traditions and culture of Vrindavan, Navaadweep and Jagannathpuri. Here, many an artwork related to the life of Bhagwan Shrikrishna has been exhibited. There is an artifact as well, that displays the Govardhan Parvat, held aloft by Bhagwan Shrikrishna on his little finger, with people of Vrindavan taking refuge beneath. Indeed, this matchless endeavour on part of Jagat Tarini ji brings to the fore the power of Krishna-Bhakti. I extend my best wishes on this effort of hers.
My dear countrymen, I was just referring to the subject of Vrindavan, built at Perth, Australia. There’s an interesting history as well…in that, Australia shares a bond with our Jhansi, Bundelkhand. Actually, when the Queen of Jhansi Laxmibai was fighting a legal battle against the East India Company, her lawyer was John Lang. John Lang was originally a resident of Australia. Staying in India, he fought Rani Laxmibai’s case. All of us know of the huge contribution of Jhansi and Bundelkhand in our Fight for Freedom. Veeranganas, brave hearts such as Rani Laxmibai and Jhalkaribai hailed from here…this region has given to the country legendary sports persons like Major Dhyanchand too.
Friends, it is not necessary that bravery should be displayed only on the battlefield. When bravery becomes a vow and it expands, then many feats start getting accomplished in every field. Mrs. Jyotsna has written a letter to me about very such valor. There was a traditional river in Jalaun – Noon River. Noon, used to be the main source of water for the farmers here, but gradually the Noon river reached the verge of extinction, the little existence that was left of this river, in that it was turning into a drain. Due to this, problems in irrigation had also arisen for the farmers. The people of Jalaun took the initiative to change this situation. This very year in March, a committee was formed for this. Thousands of villagers and local people spontaneously volunteered to join this campaign. The panchayats here started working together with the villagers, and today in such a short time, and at a very low cost, the river has come back to life again. So many farmers are benefiting from this! Apart from the battlefield, this example of bravery shows the determination of our countrymen, and it also tells that if we take a resolve, nothing is impossible and that is why I say - ‘Sabka Prayas’...everyone's effort.
My dear countrymen, when we conserve nature, in return nature also gives us protection and security. We experience this in our personal life as well and one such example has been presented by the people of Tamil Nadu on a large scale. This is the example of Thoothukudi district of Tamil Nadu. We know that coastal areas are many a time prone to land submersion. There were many such small islands and islets in Thoothukudi too, which were increasingly in danger of submerging in the sea. The people here and the experts found the mitigation from this natural disaster through nature itself. These people are now planting Palmyra trees on these islands. These trees stand firm even in cyclones and storms and give protection to the soil. Through this now a new confidence has arisen in saving this area.
Friends, nature poses a threat to us only when we disturb her balance or destroy her sanctity. Nature nurtures us like a Mother and fills our world with vivid colors too.
I have been watching on social media the picture of a flying boat in Meghalaya that is becoming viral. This picture catches our attention at the very first sight itself. Most of you must have certainly seen it online. When we look closely at this boat floating in the air, we come to know that it is moving on the river water. The water of the river is so clear that we can see its bed and the boat seems to be floating in the air. There are many states in our country ; there are many areas where people have preserved the colors of their natural heritage. These people have kept the lifestyle of living in harmony with nature alive even today. This is an inspiration to all of us too. Whatever natural resources are around us, we should save them, bring them back to their actual form. In this lies the interests of all of us ; interests of the world.
My dear countrymen, when the government makes plans, spends the budget, completes the projects on time, people feel that it is working. But in the many works of the government, amidst the many schemes of development, things related to human sensitivities always give a different kind of joy. With the efforts of the government, with the schemes of the government, the way a life changed... what is the experience of that changed life? When we hear this, we too are filled with empathy. It also gives satisfaction to the mind and gives inspiration too to take that scheme to the people. In a way, it is just 'Swant: Sukhay', joy to one’s own soul and that is why today in "Mann Ki Baat" two such friends are also joining us who have won a new life through their zeal. They got their treatment done with the help of Ayushman Bharat scheme and have started a new life. Our first friend is Rajesh Kumar Prajapati who had an ailment of the heart - heart disease. So let's talk to Rajesh ji -
Prime Minister - Rajesh ji Namaste.
Rajesh Prajapati – Namaste Sir Namaste.
Prime Minister - What was your disease Rajesh ji? You must have gone to some doctor, just explain to me what the local doctor must have said... you must have also gone to some other doctor? Then you would not have been able to take the decision or would have taken, what all used to happen? Rajesh Prajapati – Ji the problem was with my heart Sir. I used to have a burning sensation in the chest, Sir, then I showed it to the doctor. The doctor at first said “Son, maybe you have acid”... so I got treatment for acid quite some time, when I did not benefit from it, then showed it to Dr. Kapoor, then he said son, the symptoms you have will become clear by angiography, then he referred me to ShriRam Murthy. Then we met Amresh Agarwal ji, so he did my angiography. Then he said “Son, there is blockage in your vein”, so I said sir, how much will it cost? Then he said that there is a card of Ayushman which PM ji made. Then I said sir, I have it with me. Then he took that card of mine and all my treatment has been done with that card. Sir and this card that you have made in a very good way and for us poor people is very convenient. And how can I thank you!
Prime Minister - What do you do Rajesh ji?
Rajesh Prajapati - Sir, presently I am doing a private job. Sir
Prime Minister - And how old are you?
Rajesh Prajapati - I am forty nine years old, Sir.
Prime Minister - You got heart trouble at such a young age?
Rajesh Prajapati - Yes sir what to say now!
Prime Minister – In your family, earlier did your father or mother have such a thing?
Rajesh Prajapati - No sir, nobody had sir, this has happened first with me only.
Prime Minister - This Ayushman card, Government of India gives this card. This is a big scheme for the poor, so how did you come to know of it?
Rajesh Prajapati - Sir, this is such a big scheme, poor people get a lot of benefit from it and are so happy sir. I have seen in the hospital how many facilities people get from this card when they tell the doctor that they have the card. Sir, the doctor then says, okay bring that card and I will treat you with the same card.
Prime Minister – Ok, if you did not have the card, how much expenses the doctor had told you?
Rajesh Prajapati - The doctor had said that son, it will cost a lot if the card is not there. So I said sir, I have the card, so he asked me to show it immediately, so I showed it immediately. All my treatment was done with the same card, not a single penny of mine was spent, all the medicines have also been issued through the same card.
Prime Minister - So Rajesh ji, you are satisfied now, your health is fine?
Rajesh Prajapati - Sir, thank you very much sir, may you live so long that you always remain in power and our family members are also happy with you, what to say!
Prime Minister: Rajesh ji, don't wish me for being in power, I am not in power even today and I don't want to be in power in future also. I only want to be in service; for me this post, this Prime Ministership, all these things are not at all for power, brother, they are for service.
Rajesh Prajapati: Service is what we need... what else!
Prime Minister: See this Ayushman Bharat scheme for the poor in itself…
Rajesh Prajapati: Yes Sir, it is a very nice thing
Prime Minister: But see Rajesh ji, you do one thing for us, will you?
Rajesh Prajapati: Yes, absolutely Sir!
Prime Minister: See what happens - people do not know about it, you should take on a duty, find out how many poor families are around you, and how you benefited from it, how did you get help? Do tell them!
Rajesh Prajapati: Will absolutely tell Sir.
Prime Minister: And do tell them that they should also get such a card made because the family does not know when a problem may come and it is not right that the poor remain bothered on account of medicines today. Now, because of money they do not take medicine or do not seek the remedy of the disease then it is also a matter of great concern, and what happens to the poor as you’ve had this heart problem, for many months you would not have been able to work. Rajesh Prajapati: I could not walk ten steps, I could not climb stairs Sir.
Prime Minister: So Rajesh ji, by becoming a good friend of mine, you can explain this Ayushman Bharat scheme to as many poor people as you can. By the way, you can help the sick people, see you will also be satisfied and I will be very happy that come on Rajesh ji's health not only became fine but Rajesh ji got the health of hundreds of people better. This Ayushman Bharat scheme, it is for the poor, it is for the middle class, it is for the common families, so this information must be conveyed to every house by You !
Rajesh Prajapati: Will definitely convey Sir. I stayed there for three days in the hospital, Sir, so many poor people came to the hospital and told them about all the facilities ; if there is a card, it will be done for free. Prime Minister: Alright, Rajesh ji, keep yourself healthy, worry a little about your body , take care of the children and wish you a lot of progress. I wish you all the best.
Friends, we listened to Rajesh ji, now Sukh Devi ji is joining us. A knee problem had bothered her a lot, let us first listen from Sukhdevi ji about her plight and then how succour came to her, let us understand Modi ji - Sukhdevi ji Namaste! Where are you speaking from? Sukhdevi ji - from Danadpara. Modi ji - Where does this lie? Sukhdevi ji - in Mathura. Modi ji - In Mathura, then Sukhdevi ji, one has to say Namaste and say Radhe-Radhe as well! Sukhdevi ji - Yes, Radhe-Radhe! Modi ji - Well I heard that you were suffering. Have you had any operation? Can you tell what is the matter? Sukhdevi ji - Yes, my knee was damaged, so I have had an operation in Prayag Hospital | Modi ji - how old are you Sukhdevi ji? Sukhdevi ji – My age is 40 years. Modi ji - 40 years ! And named Sukhdevi ! And Sukhdevi got sick? Sukhdevi ji – I got sick when I was about 15-16 years old. Modi ji - OMG! Your knees got affected at such a young age? Sukhdevi ji – What is that called.. arthritis – gout pain in the joints, the knee got worse due to that. Modi ji - So from the age of 16 to 40, you did not get treatment for this? Sukhdevi ji - No, it was treated. Small time doctors who kept on giving medicine for pain, this is that desi medicine, this is that medicine. Quacks! I was able to walk with them but the knees got worse, I had only walked 1-2 kilometers and then my knees got worse. Modi ji - So Sukhdevi ji how did the idea of operation come about? How did you manage the money for it? How did all of this happen? Sukhdevi ji - I have got the treatment done with the Ayushman card. Modi ji - So you had got an Ayushman card? Sukhdevi ji - Yes. Modi ji - And there is free treatment for the poor with Ayushman card. Did you know this? Sukhdevi ji – There was a meeting in the school. From there, my husband came to know and he got the card made in my name. Modi ji - Yes. Sukhdevi ji - Then I got the treatment done by card, and I did not spend any money. I have been treated by the card itself. It has been a great treatment. Modi ji – Good. If there was no card, how much cost did the doctor say earlier? Sukhdevi ji - 2.5 lakh rupees, three lakh rupees. For 6-7 years I’ve been on the cot! I used to say that oh God call me, I don’t want to live! Modi ji : you were on the cot for 6-7 years! Good God! Sukhdevi ji - Yes. Modi ji - Oho! Sukhdevi ji – Couldn’t get up at all! Modi ji - So now your knee is better than before? Sukhdevi ji - I walk around a lot. I roam! I do kitchen work! I do housework! I cook for the children. Modi ji - So the card of Ayushman Bharat has really made you Ayushman, blessed with long life. Sukhdevi ji – Thank you very much! Because of your scheme, I got cured, I got back on my feet. Modi ji - So now even the children must be happy ? Sukhdevi ji - Yes. The children used to face a lot of trouble. Now if the mother is upset, naturally the child will also be upset. Modi ji - Look, our health is the biggest happiness in our lives, that everyone should get this cheerful life is the essence of Ayushman Bharat. Sukhdevi ji, I wish you all the very best, Radhe-Radhe to you once again. Sukhdevi ji - Radhe - Radhe, Namaste!
My dear countrymen, in every country with a large youth population, three aspects matter a lot. Sometimes, it becomes the true identity of the youth. The first aspect is - Ideas and Innovation. The second is the spirit of taking risks and the third is the Can Do Spirit, that is, the determination to accomplish any task, no matter how adverse the circumstances be - when these three things combine, phenomenal results are produced, miracles happen. These days, all we hear about from every corner is about Start-up, Start-up, Start-up. It is true, this is the era of start-up, and it is also true that in the world of start-up, India is leading in a way in the world today. Start-ups are getting record investment year after year. This sector is progressing very fast. The reach of start-ups has increased even in small towns of the country. These days the word 'Unicorn' is in vogue. You all must have heard about it. 'Unicorn' is a start-up whose valuation is at least 1 Billion Dollars, that is more than about seven thousand crore rupees.
Friends, till the year 2015, there used to be hardly nine or ten Unicorns in the country. You will be very happy to know that now India is flying high even in the world of Unicorns. According to a report, a big change has come this year. In just 10 months, a unicorn is being raised in India every 10 days. This is also a big thing because our youth have achieved this success in the midst of the corona pandemic. Today there are more than 70 Unicorns in India. That is, there are more than 70 start-ups that have crossed the valuation of more than 1 billion. Friends, due to the success of Start-Ups, everyone has noticed them and the way they are getting support from investors from all over the country and abroad. Perhaps, just a few years ago no one could have imagined this happening.
Friends, Indian youth are also contributing to the solution of global problems through start-ups. Today we will talk to a young Mayur Patil, he along with his friends have tried to put forward a solution to the problem of pollution.
Modi ji - Mayur ji Namaste.
Mayur Patil - Namaste Sir ji.
Modi ji - Mayur ji how are you?
Mayur Patil - Just fine sir. How are you ?
Modi ji - I am very happy. Ok tell me...You are in the start-up world.
Mayur Patil - Ji
Modi ji - and doing the ‘best’ out of the ‘waste’...
Mayur Patil - Ji
Modi ji - And for the environment too, tell me a little about yourself. Tell us about your work and how did you get the idea behind this work?
Mayur Patil - Sir, I had a motorcycle when I was in college. Its mileage was extremely low and emissions were very high. It was a two stroke motorcycle. Thus, in order to reduce the emissions and increase its mileage by a bit, I started trying. Sometime in 2011-12, I managed to increase the mileage by about 62 kilometres per liter. From there, I got the inspiration to make something that can be mass produced, so that it can be of benefit to many people. So, in 2017-18 we developed its technology and used it in 10 buses of the Regional Transport Corporation. We then checked the results and found that we managed to reduce emissions by forty percent in these buses.
Modi ji - Hmm! Now this technology which you have developed, have you got its patent registered?
Mayur Patil - Haan Ji! It has been patented. This year, it came to us through a patent grant.
Modi ji - And what is your plan to scale it further? How are you doing that? With the result of the buses being received, many other pieces of information must have come out too. What are you thinking of next?
Mayur Patil - Sir, under the aegis of Start-Up India..NITI Aayog has launched the Atal New India Challenge. From there we got the grant and on the basis of that grant, we just started our factory where we can manufacture air filters.
Modi ji - So how much grant did you get from the Government of India?
Mayur Patil – 90 Lakhs
Modi Ji – 90 Lakhs
Mayur Patil - Ji
Modi ji - and your work is done with it.
Mayur Patil - Yes, it has started now. It is in the process.
Modi ji - How many of your friends are doing all of this together?
Mayur Patil - We are four people Sir.
Modi ji - And all four used to study together earlier and from that you got an idea to move forward?
Mayur Patil - Ji! Ji! We were still in college. And in college we thought about all of this and it was my idea that I should at least reduce the pollution of my motorcycle and increase the mileage.
Modi ji - Ok, so if we reduce pollution and increase mileage, how much is the average money that can be saved?
Mayur Patil – Sir, we tested the mileage on the motorcycle, and increased its mileage from 25 Kilometers per liter to 39 Kilometers per liter, that is there was a gain of about 14 kilometers... And 40 percent carbon emissions were reduced. When we tested on the Regional Transport Corporation buses, there was an increase in fuel efficiency by 10 percent and the emissions reduced by 35 to 40 percent.
Modi ji - Mayur, I enjoyed talking to you and do congratulate your friends on my behalf…. You found a solution to the problem that you had in college life and now the path chosen by all of you is providing solutions in solving environmental issues and you have taken up cudgels to address it. And it is the power of the youth of our country that they take up any big challenge and look for avenues. I wish you all the best. Thank you very much
Mayur Patil - Thank you Sir! Thank you!
Friends, a few years back if someone used to say that he wants to do business or wants to start a new company, then, the elders of the family used to answer that – “Why don’t you want to do a job, have a job bhai! There is security in the job, there is salary. The hassle is also less. But, if someone wants to start their own company today, then all the people around him are very excited and also fully supportive. Friends, this is the turning point of India's growth story, where people are now not only dreaming of becoming job seekers but also becoming job creators. This will further strengthen India's stature on the global stage.
My dear countrymen, today in 'Mann Ki Baat' we talked about Amrit Mahotsav. We discussed how our countrymen are fulfilling new resolutions in this AmritKaal and also mentioned the stories related to the valour of our Army in the month of December. In the month of December, another big day is ahead of us from which we take inspiration. This day is the death anniversary of Babasaheb Ambedkar on 6th December. Baba Saheb had devoted his entire life in rendering his duties for the country and society. We the countrymen should never forget the basic spirit of our Constitution, that our Constitution expects all of us to discharge our duties - so let us also take a pledge that in the Amrit Mahotsav, we will try to fulfill our duties with full devotion. This shall be our true tribute to Baba Saheb.
Friends, we are now entering the month of December. It is natural that the next 'Mann Ki Baat' of 2021 will be the last 'Mann Ki Baat' of this year. We will start the journey again in 2022 and yes, I keep expecting a lot of suggestions from you and will keep doing so. How are you bidding farewell to this year, what are you going to do in the new year, please do tell and yes!... Don't forget that Corona has not gone yet. It is the responsibility of all of us to take precautions.