Text of Prime Minister’s ‘Mann ki Baat’ on All India Radio

Published By : Admin | November 2, 2014 | 11:28 IST
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My dear fellow countrymen, 

I am with you again almost after a month. A month is quite a long time. Lots of things keep happening in the world. You all have recently celebrated the festival of Diwali with great fervour and joy. It is these festivals which bring happiness in our daily lives from time to time. Be it poor or rich, people from village or from urban areas, festivals hold a different significance in everyone’s lives. This is my first meeting after Diwali, so I convey my very warm wishes to you all. 

Last time we had some general conversation. But then I came to some new realizations after that conversation. Sometimes we think leave it... nothing is going to change, people are indifferent, they will not do anything, our country is like this. From my last conversation in Mann Ki Baat to this one, I would urge you all to change this mindset. Neither is our country is like this nor our people indifferent. Sometimes I feel the Nation is way ahead and the government is lacking behind. And from my personal experience I will say that the governments too needs to change their mindsets. And I say that because I can see tremendous sense of commitment in the Indian youth. They are very eager to do their bit and are just seeking an opportunity where they can do their bit. And they are making efforts at their own end. Last time I had asked them to buy at least one khadi outfit. I had not asked anyone to be Khadidhari, But the feedback I got from Khadi stores was that in a week’s time the sales had jumped up by 125%. In this way, as compared to last year the sales this year is more than double in the week following 2nd Oct. This means, the people of our country is many times more than we think of. I salute all my fellow Indians. 

Cleanliness……….. Can anyone imagine that cleanliness will become a such a huge public movement. The expectations are high and they should be so. I can see some good results, cleanliness can now be witnessed in two parts. One is those huge garbage piles which keep lying in the city; well the people in the government will work to remove those. It is a big challenge but you cannot run away from your responsibilities. All state governments and all municipalities will now have to take concrete actions due to the rising public pressure. Media is playing a very positive role in this. But there is the second aspect which gives me immense pleasure, happiness and a sense of satisfaction that the general public has started feeling that leave what happened in the past, now they will not dirty their surroundings. We will not add to the existing dirt. A gentleman Mr Bharat Gupta has sent me a mail on mygov.in from Satna, Madhya Pradesh. He has related his personal experience during his tour of the railways. He said that people eat on trains and usually litter around. He continues to say that he has been touring from the past many years but it is this time around no one was littering, rather they were looking for dustbins to throw their trash. When they could not see any arrangements they collected all their litter in a corner. He says that it was a very gratifying experience for me. I thank Bharat ji for sharing this experience with me. 

What I am seeing is that this campaign has had a great influence on kids. Many families mention that now whenever kids eat a chocolate they themselves pick the wrapper and disposes it. I was seeing a message on the social media. Someone had posted a picture with the Title “My hero of the Day”. This picture was that of a little kid who, picks up trash, wherever he goes, even when going to school. He is himself motivated to do this. Just see…people now feel it is their country and they will not make it dirty. We will not add to the existing dirt pile. And those do litter feel ashamed for someone is around to point it out to them. I consider all these to be good omens. 

Another thing is that many people come to meet me who are from all the sections of the society. They can be government officers, from film world, sports world, industrialists, scientists ……. All of them, whenever they interact with me, in ten minutes discussion, about four to five minutes the discussion is on social issues. Someone talks about cleanliness, while some others talk about education, while someone talks about social reforms. Some people discuss the ruining of family life. I initially thought if a businessman comes, he will definitely talk of things of his personal interest. But I am seeing a major change. 

They talk less about their interest and more about taking on some or the other social responsibility. When I add up all these small incidents I see a larger picture and I realize that we are moving in the right direction. It is true that unhealthy environment leads to diseases and sickness, but where does sickness strike first. It first strikes the poor household. When we work towards cleanliness, we make a major effort in the direction of helping the poor. If the poor families are saved from diseases, then they will be saved from a lot of financial problems. If a person is healthy, then he will work hard, earn for the family and help in running the family smoothly. And so this cleanliness drive is directly related to the health and welfare of my poor brethren. We may not be able to do something to help the poor, but even keeping the environs clean helps the poor in a big way. Let us view it from this perspective; it will be very beneficial. 

I receive different kinds of letters. Last time I had mentioned about our specially abled children. Whom God has given some kind of deficiencies; I had expressed my feelings regarding those people. I see that people who work in this field are sending me their success stories. But I came to know about two things from my people in the government. The people from the HRD ministry after hearing my talk, felt the need to do something. And the officers came together to work out an action plan. This is an example of how changes are coming about in governance. One they have decided that those specially abled who want to pursue technical education, a thousand of them who are good will be selected for Special Scholarships, and a plan has been made. I congratulate the officials who could think in those lines. Another important decision is that all the Kendriya Vidyalaya’s and all Central Universities will have a special infrastructure for the specially abled, for example if they can’t climb stairs then there will be provision for ramps to facilitate movement by wheel chair. They need different kinds of toilets. The HRD ministry has decided to allocate an additional Lakh rupees to the Kendriya Vidyalays and Central universities. This fund will be used by these institutions to create infrastructure for the specially abled. This is an auspicious beginning……………these things will lead us to change. 

I had the chance to visit Siachin a few days back. I spent Diwali with the Jawans who are ready to lay down their lives for the nation. When the nation was celebrating Diwali I was at Siachin. It is because of them that we were able to celebrate Diwali, so I wanted to be with them. I experienced the difficulties in which they spent their time there. I salute all my Jawans. But I want to share another matter of great pride with you. Our Jawans work in the field of security. In calamities, they risk their lives to save our life. They also fetch medals for us in sporting events. You will be glad to know that these Jawans have won a gold medal in a very prestigious event in Britain called Cambrian Patrol, defeating contestants from 140 nations. I offer these Jawans my heartiest congratulations. 

I also got an opportunity to meet, the young and dynamic students, boys and girls over tea who had won medals in Sports. They give me renewed energy. I was seeing their zeal and enthusiasm. The facilities in our country are quite less as compared to other nations, but instead of complaining they were just sharing their joy and excitement. For me, this tea programme for these players was very inspiring, and I felt really good. 

I would like to tell you something more and that too from my heart. I truly believe that people of my country trust my words and my intentions. But, today one more time, I want to reiterate my commitment. As far as black money is concerned, my people, please trust your Prime Servant, for me this is the Article of Faith. This is my commitment that the hard-earned money of the poor people stashed abroad, every penny of that should be brought back. The ways and means to be followed can be different. And this is very obvious in a democratic country, but on the basis of as much I understand and as much I know, I assure you that we are on the right track. Today, nobody, neither me, nor the government, nor you, nor even the previous government knew how much money is stashed abroad. Everyone gives estimate calculated in his/her own way. I don’t want to get lost in some such figures and estimates, Its my commitment that, be it 2 rupees, or 5 rupees, or millions or even billions, this is the hard-earned money of the poor people of my country and it has to come back. And I assure you that I will keep trying till the end. No efforts will be spared. I want your blessings to be always with me. I assure you that I will do whatever and whenever something is required to be done for you. I give my commitment to you. 

I have received a letter. It has been sent by Sri Abhishek Pareekh. The same sentiments were expressed to me by many mothers and sisters when I was not even the Prime Minister. Some doctor friends had also expressed their concern and I too have expressed my views on this issue a number of times in the past. Mr. Parikh has drawn my attention towards the increase of drug addiction that is fast catching up with our young generation. He has asked me to discuss this topic in “Mann ki Baat.” I agree with his concern and I will definitely include this topic, in my next edition of Mann Ki Baat. I will discuss the topic of drugs, drug addiction and drug mafia and how they are a threat to our country’s youth. If you have some experience, any information in this regard, if you have ever rescued any child from this drug addiction, if you know of any ways and means to help, if any government official has played a good role, if you give me any such information, I will convey such efforts to the public and together we will try to create an environment in each family that no child ever thinks of choosing this vice out of sheer frustration. I will definitely discuss this in detail in the next edition. 

I know I am choosing those topics which put the government in the dock. But how long will we keep these things hiding? How long will we brush these important concerns under the carpet? Some day or the other we need to take a call, follow our instincts and for grand intentions tough calls are equally important. I am mustering the courage to do so because your love inspires me to do so. And I will continue to do such things because of your love. 

Some people told me “ Modi ji you asked us to send you suggestions on Facebook, twitter or email. But a large section of the social class does not have access to these facilities, so what can they do. Your point is very valid. Everyone does not have this facility. Well then, if you have something to say related to Mann Ki Baat, that you hear on the radio even in the villages then do write into me on the following address

Mann Ki Baat
Akashvani
Sansad Marg
New Delhi. 

Even if you send some suggestions through letters they will definitely reach me. And I will take them seriously as active citizens are the biggest asset for development. You write one letter, it indicates that you are very active. When you give your opinion, it means that you are concerned with national issues and this is strength of the nation. I welcome you. 

For my Mann Ki Baat, your mann ki baat sould also reach me. Maybe you will definitely write a letter. I will try and interact with you again next month. I will try, that whenever I talk, it is Sunday, around 11 am. So I am getting closer to you. 

The weather is changing. Winters are slowly setting in. This is a good month for health. Some find it a good season for eating. Some find it good for wearing nice clothes. Besides food and clothes it is a good season for health. Don’t let it go waste. Make the most of it. 

Thank You. 

(The original speech was in Hindi, this is the English rendering. Original speech remains the authoritative version)

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In 1975, Emergency was imposed, Right to Life and Personal Liberty was taken away: PM Modi
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Hello my dear countrymen Namaskar! I have received many letters from all of you for 'Mann Ki Baat'; I have also received many messages on social media and NaMoApp. I am very thankful to you for that. In this program, it is our endeavour to discuss each other's inspiring efforts; to tell the story of change through mass movement to the entire country. In this episode, I want to discuss with you today one such mass movement of the country, that holds great importance in the life of every citizen of the country. But, before that I want to ask a question to the youth of today's generation, to the youth in the age group of 24-25 years, and the question is very serious… do ponder my question over. Did you know that when your parents were your age, once even their right to life was snatched away from them? You must be thinking how could have this happened? This is just impossible! But my young friends, this had happened once in our country. This took place years ago in 1975. It was the month of June when emergency was imposed. In that, all the rights were taken away from the citizens of the country. One amongst those rights was the 'Right to Life and Personal Liberty' provided to all Indians under Article 21 of the Constitution. 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. 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 the people of India in democracy did not shake… not at all! For us, the people of India, the sanskars of democracy which we have been carrying on for centuries; the democratic spirit which is in our veins, finally won. The people of India got rid of the emergency and re-established democracy in a democratic way. It is difficult to find such an example of defeating a dictatorial mindset, a dictatorial tendency in a democratic way, in the whole world. 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. Today, when the country is celebrating 75 years of its independence, celebrating Amrit Mahotsav, we should never forget that dreadful period of emergency. The generations to come should also not forget. The Amrit Mahotsav not only encompasses the victory saga of freedom from hundreds of years of slavery, but also the journey of 75 years after independence. We move forward, learning from every important stage of history.

My dear countrymen, there is hardly any of us who, in one’s life, has not had fantasies pertaining to the sky. During one’s childhood, stories of the moon and stars in the sky attract everyone. For the youth, touching the sky is synonymous with making dreams come true. Today, when our India is touching the sky of success in so many fields, how can the skies, or space, remain untouched by it! In the past few years, many big feats related to the space sector have been accomplished in our country. One of these achievements of the country has been the creation of an agency named In-Space… an agency that is promoting new opportunities in the space sector for the private sector of India. This beginning has especially attracted the youth of our country. I have received messages related to this from many young people.

A few days ago when I had gone to dedicate to the people the headquarters of In-Space, I saw the ideas and enthusiasm of many young start-ups. I also talked to them for a long time. You too will not be able to help being surprised when you learn about them. For example, take just the number and speed of space start-ups. 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, which were either not thought about earlier, or were considered impossible for the private sector. For example, 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. Similarly, Dhruva Space, another Start-Up of Hyderabad, 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 the 30th of June. Similarly, Neha, the founder of Astrome, a space start-up based in Bangalore, is also working on an amazing idea. This start-up is making such flat antennas which will not only be small, but their cost will also be very low. Demand for this technology can be all over the world.

Friends, in the program of In-Space, I also met beti Tanvi Patel, a school student of Mehsana. She is working on a very small satellite, which is going to be launched in space in the next few months. Tanvi told me about her work very simply in Gujarati. Like Tanvi, about seven hundred and fifty school students in the country are working on 75 such satellites in the Amrit Mahotsav, and it is also a matter of joy that, most of these students are from small towns of the country.

Friends, these are the same youth, in whose mind the image of the space sector was like a secret mission a few years ago, but, the country undertook space reforms, and the same youth are now launching their own satellites. When the youth of the country is ready to touch the sky, how can our country be left behind?

My dear countrymen, in 'Mann Ki Baat', let's now talk about a topic that will delight your mind and inspire you as well. Recently, our Olympic gold medalist Neeraj Chopra was again in the headlines. Even after the Olympics, he is setting new records of success, one after the other. Neeraj won the silver at Paavo Nurmi Games in Finland. Not only that, He also broke the record of his own Javelin Throw. Neeraj once again made the country proud by winning the gold in Kuortane Games. He won this gold in conditions when the weather there was also inclement. This zest is the hallmark of today's youth. From Start-Ups to the Sports World, the youth of India are making new records. In the recently held Khelo India Youth Games too, our players set many records. You would love to know that a total of 12 records have been broken in these games - not only that, 11 records have been registered in the names of female players. M. Martina Devi of Manipur has made eight records in weightlifting.

Similarly, Sanjana, Sonakshi and Bhavna have also made different records. With their hard work, these players have proven how much India's prestige is going to rise in international sports arena in the coming times. I also congratulate all these players and wish them all the best for the future.

Friends, there has been another special feature of Khelo India Youth Games. This time too many such talents have emerged, who are from very ordinary families. These players have struggled a lot in their lives to reach this stage of success. In their success, their family, and parents too, have had a big role to play.

Father of Adil Altaf from Srinagar, who won the gold in 70 km cycling, does tailoring work, but, has left no stone unturned to fulfill his son's dreams. Today Adil has brought pride to his father and the entire Jammu-Kashmir. Gold winner L. Dhanush’s father is a carpenter in Chennai. Sangli's daughter Kajol Sargar’s father works as a tea vendor. Kajol would help her father and practice weight lifting as well. This hard work of hers and her family paid off and Kajol has won a lot of accolades in weight lifting. Tanu of Rohtak has performed a similar kind of miracle. Tanu's father Rajbir Singh is a school bus driver in Rohtak. By winning the gold medal in wrestling, Tanu has realized her own, her family’s and her father’s dream.

Friends, in the sports world, now, the dominance of Indian players is increasing; at the same time, a new image of Indian sports is also emerging. For example, in Khelo India Youth Games, besides disciplines that are in Olympics, five indigenous sports, were also included this time. These five sports are – Gatka, Thang Ta, Yogasan, Kalaripayattu and Mallakhamb.

Friends, there is going to be an international tournament of a game which was born centuries ago in our own country…in India. This is the event of Chess Olympiad beginning from the 28th July. This time, more than 180 countries are participating in the Chess Olympiad. Today's discussion of sports and fitness cannot be complete without another name - this is the name of Telangana's mountaineer Poorna Malavath. By completeing the 7 summit challenge Poorna has added another feather in her cap of success. The seven summit challenge…that is the challenge of surmounting seven most difficult and highest mountain peaks. With her indomitable spirit, Purva ascended the highest peak of North America Mount Denali and brought honour to the counry. Poorna is the same daughter of India who had accomplished the amazing feat of done a conquering Mount Everest at the age of just 13.

Friends, when it comes to sports, today I would also like to discuss Mithali Raj, one of the most talented cricketers in India. Just this month, she has announced her retirement from cricket which has emotionally moved many sports lovers. Mithali has not only been an extraordinary player, but has also been an inspiration to many players. I wish Mithali all the very best for her future.

My dear countrymen, in 'Mann Ki Baat' we have been discussing the successful efforts related to ‘waste to wealth’. One such example is that of Aizwal, the capital of Mizoram. There is a beautiful river 'Chitte Lui' in Aizwal, which due to neglect for years, had turned into a heap of dirt and garbage. Efforts have started in the last few years to save this river. For this, local agencies, voluntary organizations and local people, together, are also running the Save Chitte Lui action plan. This campaign of cleaning the river has also made an opportunity for wealth creation from waste. Actually, this river and its banks were full of plastic and polythene waste. The organization working to save the river, decided to build a road using this polythene, that is, the waste that came out of the river. From that, in a village in Mizoram, the state's first plastic road was built… that is cleanliness and development as well.

Friends, one such effort has also been undertaken by the youth of Puducherry through their voluntary organizations. Puducherry is situated along the sea coast. A large number of people come to see the beaches and marine beauty there. But, the pollution caused by plastic was also increasing on the sea coast of Puducherry, therefore, to save its sea, beaches and ecology, people here have started the 'Recycling for Life' campaign. Today, thousands of kilograms of garbage is collected and segregated every day in Karaikal, Puducherry. The organic waste from that is made into compost; the rest of the matter is separated and recycled. Such efforts are not only inspiring, but also lend momentum to India's campaign against single use plastic.

Friends, at this time when I am talking to you, a unique cycling rally is also going on in Himachal Pradesh. I want to tell you about this too. A group of cyclists have started from Shimla to Mandi carrying the message of cleanliness. These people will complete this distance of about one hundred and seventy five kilometers on mountain roads, only by cycling. There are children as well as the elderly in this group. If our environment is clean, our mountains and rivers, our seas remain clean; our health also gets better. You must keep writing me about such efforts.

My dear countrymen, monsoon is continuously progressing in our country. Rain is increasing in many states. This is also the time to make special efforts in the direction of 'water' and 'water conservation'. In our country, for centuries, this responsibility has been taken by the society together. You will remember, in 'Mann Ki Baat' we once discussed the legacy of step wells. The Baolis are those big wells which are reached by descending stairs. In Udaipur, Rajasthan, there is one such stepwell which is hundreds of years old - 'Sultan Ki Baoli'. It was built by Rao Sultan Singh, but due to neglect, gradually this place has become deserted and has turned into a pile of garbage. One day some youths roaming around reached this stepwell and were very sad to see its condition. At that very moment these youths resolved to change the picture and destiny of Sultan Ki Baoli. They named this mission of their - 'Sultan se Sur-Tan'. You must be wondering, what is this ‘Sur Tan! In fact, with their efforts, these youths have not only rejuvenated the step well, but have also linked it to the notes and melody of the music. After cleaning the Sultan's stepwell, after decorating it, takes place a program of harmony and music. There is so much talk of this change, that many people from abroad have started coming to see it. The most important thing about this successful effort is that the youth who started the campaign are chartered accountants. Coincidentally, a few days from now, July 1 is observed as chartered accountants day. I congratulate all the CAs of the country in advance. We can create a similar sense of awareness about our water bodies by connecting them with music and other social programs. Water conservation is actually life conservation. You must have seen, nowadays, how many 'river festivals' are being held! Whichever water sources are there in your cities, you must organize one event or the other.

My dear countrymen, our Upanishads mention about a life mantra- ‘Charaiveti-Charaiveti-Charaiveti’- you must have heard this mantra too. It means – keep going, keep going. This mantra is so popular in our country because it is part of our nature to keep moving, to be dynamic; to keep moving. As a nation, we have come this far through a journey of development spanning thousands of years. As a society, we have always moved ahead by accepting new ideas, new changes. Our cultural mobility and travels have contributed a lot in this. That is why our sages and saints had entrusted us with spiritual responsibilities like pilgrimage. All of us go on varied pilgrimages. You must have seen that this time a large number of devotees participated in the Chardham Yatra. In our country, from time to time, different Dev-yatras also take place. Dev Yatras… that is, in which not only the devotees but also our Gods go on a journey. In just a few days from now on the 1st of July, the famous journey of Lord Jagannath is going to commence. All of us are familiar with the Puri yatra in Odisha. People make efforts to ensure that on this occasion they get the good fortune of going to Puri. In other states too, Jagannath Yatras are taken out with great gaiety and fervour. Bhagwan Jagannath Yatra begins on Dwitiya, the second day of the month of Ashadha. In our texts 'Ashadhasya Dwitiya divase... Rath Yatra', this is how the description is found in Sanskrit shlokas. In Ahmedabad, Gujrat too, every year Rath Yatra begins from Ashadh Dwitiya. I was in Gujarat, so I also used to get the privilege of serving in this Yatra every year. 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. For me this day is also very special - I remember, a day before Ashadha Dwitiya, that is, on the first Tithi of Ashadha, we started a Sanskrit festival in Gujarat, which comprises songs, music and cultural programs in Sanskrit language. The name of this event is – 'Ashadhasya Pratham Diwase'. There is also a reason behind giving this special name to the festival. Actually, the great Sanskrit poet Kalidas wrote the Meghdootam on the arrival of rain from the month of Ashadh. There is a verse in Meghdootam – Ashadhasya Pratham Diwase, Megham Ashlishta Sanum, that is, mountain peaks covered with clouds on the first day of Ashadha, this verse became the basis of this event.

Friends, be it Ahmedabad or Puri, Lord Jagannath also gives us many deep human messages through this journey. Bhagwan Jagannath is the lord of the world, but the poor and downtrodden have a special participation in his journey. God also walks along with every section and person of the society. Similarly, in all the journeys that take place in our country, there is no such distinction between poor and rich, high and low. Rising above all discrimination, the journey itself is paramount. As you must have heard about the Yatra of Pandharpur in Maharashtra.... In the Pandharpur Yatra, one is neither big nor small. Everyone is a Varkari, a servant of Bhagwan Vitthal. Just 4 days later,the Amarnath Yatra is also going to start from the 30th of June. Devotees from all over the country reach Jammu Kashmir for the Amarnath Yatra. The local people of Jammu Kashmir take the responsibility of this Yatra with equal reverence, and cooperate with the pilgrims.

Friends, the Sabarimala Yatra has the same importance in the South. This pilgrimage to seek Darshan of Bhagwan Ayyappa on the hills of Sabarimala has been going on from the times when this path was completely surrounded by forests. Even today, when people go on these yatras, how many opportunities are created for the poor… from religious rituals to lodging arrangements… that is, these yatras directly give us an opportunity to serve the poor and are equally beneficial to them. That is why the country, too, is now making many efforts to increase the facilities for the devotees in their spiritual journeys. If you too go on such a journey, you will also have a glance of Ek Bharat- Shreshtha Bharat along with spirituality.

My dear countrymen, as always, this time also it was a very pleasant experience to connect with all of you through 'Mann Ki Baat'. We discussed the successes and achievements of the countrymen. In the midst of all this, we also have to take precautions against Corona. However, it is a matter of satisfaction that today the country has a comprehensive protective shield of a vaccine. We have reached close to 200 crore vaccine doses. 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. We also have to take necessary precautions like hand hygiene and masks. We also have to be alert of the diseases caused by the surrounding filth during the rainy season. All of you stay alert, stay healthy and keep moving forward with similar positive energy. We'll meet again next month, until then, many many thanks. Namaskar!