Today, the people of Nepal have shown how much love they have for me and the people of India. At many places in Kathmandu, people received me with such warmth, it shows the affection they have for the people of India.

I also felt that Nepal is moving ahead on the path of development with new hope and energy.

The process of Constitution-making is also moving forward.

Mr. Sushil Koirala’s struggle for democracy is an inspiration for all.

My doors are open, I invite you to bring any suggestions to review the 1950 Treaty, if you so want.

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77ਵੇਂ ਸੁਤੰਤਰਤਾ ਦਿਵਸ ਦੇ ਅਵਸਰ ’ਤੇ ਲਾਲ ਕਿਲੇ ਦੀ ਫ਼ਸੀਲ ਤੋਂ ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨ ਮੰਤਰੀ, ਸ਼੍ਰੀ ਨਰੇਂਦਰ ਮੋਦੀ ਦੇ ਸੰਬੋਧਨ ਦਾ ਮੂਲ-ਪਾਠ
Narendra Modi’s Digital Century Gives Democratic Hope From India Amidst Global Turmoil

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Narendra Modi’s Digital Century Gives Democratic Hope From India Amidst Global Turmoil
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Role of newspapers is crucial in the journey to Viksit Bharat: PM Modi at inauguration of INS Towers in Mumbai
July 13, 2024
“Role of newspapers is very important in the journey to Viksit Bharat in the next 25 years”
“The citizens of a country who gain confidence in their capabilities start achieving new heights of success. The same is happening in India today”
“INS has not only been a witness to the ups and downs of India’s journey but also lived it and communicated it to the people”
“A country’s global image directly affects its economy. Indian publications should enhance their global presence”

Hon’ble Governor of Maharashtra, Shri Ramesh Bais ji, Chief Minister Shri Eknath Shinde ji, Deputy Chief Ministers Bhai Devendra Fadnavis ji and Ajit Dada Pawar ji, President of the Indian Newspaper Society, Rakesh Sharma ji, all distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen!

First of all, I extend my hearty congratulations to all the members of the Indian Newspaper Society. Today, you have been provided with a large and modern building in Mumbai. I hope that this new building will enhance your work efficiency and ease of working, thereby strengthening our democracy. The Indian Newspaper Society is one of the institutions that came into existence before independence, and thus, you have closely observed and experienced every high and low in the country's journey, and have conveyed it to the general public. Therefore, the more effective your work becomes as an organization, the more the country will benefit.


The media is not just a passive observer of the country's conditions. All of you in the media play a crucial role in changing conditions and guiding the nation. Today, Bharat is at a point in time where the next 25 years of its journey are very important. For Bharat to become developed in these 25 years, the role of newspapers and magazines is equally significant. It is the media that raises awareness among the country's citizens. It is the media that constantly reminds the citizens of their rights. And it is the media that makes people realize their potential. You also see that when citizens of a country gain confidence in their potential, they start achieving new heights of success. This is also happening in Bharat today. Let me give you a small example. There was a time when some leaders openly said that digital transactions are beyond the capability of the people of Bharat. They thought that modern technology would not work in this country. But the world is witnessing the wisdom and potential of the people of Bharat. Today, Bharat is breaking huge records in digital transactions globally.

Today, due to Bharat’s UPI and modern Digital Public Infrastructure, the ease of living has increased, and transfer of money from one place to another has become easier. Today, our countrymen living across the world, especially in Gulf countries, are sending the most remittances, and the cost they used to incur has significantly reduced, partly due to this digital revolution. Major countries worldwide are trying to understand our technology and implementation model. This great success is not just due to the government. You all in the media have also contributed to this success, and therefore, you all deserve congratulations.


The natural role of the media is to create discourse and to strengthen discussions on serious topics. However, the direction of media discourse often depends on government policies. You know every action is viewed through the lens of vote arithmetic in governments. We have changed this mindset. You may recall that banks were nationalized in our country decades ago. But the truth was that there were 40-50 crore poor people in the country who did not even have a bank account until 2014. When nationalization happened, what was said and what was the fact in 2014? Half the country was outside the banking system. Did this issue ever become a topic of discussion in our country? But we adopted the Jan Dhan Yojana as a movement. We connected about 50 crore people to the banking system. This became our biggest medium in Digital India and anti-corruption efforts. Similarly, if we look at campaigns like the Cleanliness Campaign, Start-up India, and Standup India! They did not fit anywhere in vote bank politics. But in the changing Bharat, the media of the country made them a part of the national discourse. The word start-up, which most people were unaware of before 2014, was brought into every household through media discussions.


You are all media veterans, very experienced. Your decisions also guide the country's media. Therefore, I have a few requests for you through this program


When the government starts a program, it doesn't necessarily mean it's only a government program. If the government emphasizes a particular idea, it doesn't mean it's just the government's idea. For example, the country celebrated Amrit Mahotsav and ran the 'Har Ghar Tiranga' campaign. While the government initiated these campaigns, the entire country adopted and advanced them. Similarly, today the country is focusing so much on the environment. This is a topic beyond politics, concerning the future of humanity. For instance, the 'Ek Ped Maa Ke Naam' (A Tree in Mother's Name) campaign has just started. This campaign of Bharat is also being discussed worldwide. When I presented this topic at the G7, there was great curiosity because everyone has an attachment to their mother, and they felt it would click well with people. Everyone was saying this. The more media houses in the country join this effort, the more it will benefit future generations. My request is to consider every such effort as the country's effort and promote it. This is not just the government's effort; it is the country's effort. This year, we are also celebrating the 75th anniversary of the Constitution. You can play an important role in increasing the sense of duty and awareness towards the Constitution among citizens.


Another topic is related to tourism. Tourism does not grow solely through government policies. When we collectively make efforts to create a brand and market the country, tourism increases along with the country's honour. You can find your own ways to promote tourism in the country. For example, if all newspapers in Maharashtra decide to promote Bengal's tourism in September, when people in Maharashtra see Bengal being highlighted everywhere then they might plan to visit Bengal, thereby increasing Bengal's tourism. Suppose after three months, you decide to focus collectively on Tamil Nadu. You will see that people in Maharashtra, who are planning trips, will choose Tamil Nadu. This can be a way to boost tourism in the country, and when you do this, similar campaigns for Maharashtra might start in those states, benefiting Maharashtra. This will increase attraction and curiosity among states for each other, and ultimately, the state where you initiate this effort will benefit without extra effort

I also request you to enhance your global presence. We need to think globally. As far as the media is concerned, we are a country of 140 crore people. Such a large country, with so much potential and possibilities, and in a very short time, we are about to become the third-largest economy. You can effectively take on the responsibility of spreading Bharat’s successes to the corners of the world. You know that the image of a nation abroad directly impacts its economy and growth. Today, you see that the stature, credibility, and respect of people of Indian origin have increased abroad because Bharat’s reputation has improved globally. Bharat is also contributing significantly more to global progress. The more our media works from this perspective, the more the country will benefit. Hence, I would like to see your publications expand in as many UN languages as possible. Your microsites, social media accounts can be in these languages as well, and today, with AI, this work has become much easier for you.


I have given you many suggestions. I know that space in your newspapers and magazines is very limited. But nowadays, every newspaper and publication has digital editions where there are no space limitations or distribution issues. I am confident that you will consider these suggestions, conduct new experiments, and strengthen democracy. I firmly believe that even a small edition of two pages in UN languages is seen and read by a large segment of the world, including embassies. Your digital editions can become a great source of conveying Bharat’s message. The stronger your work, the more the country will progress. With this belief, I thank you all very much! And I am glad I got the opportunity to meet you all. My best wishes to you! Thank you!