My dear countrymen, Namaskar.
Today we are coming together for the ninety-sixth (96) episode of 'Mann Ki Baat'. The next episode of 'Mann Ki Baat' will be the first episode of the year 2023. In the messages sent by you, you have also urged to speak about the departing 2022. Observation of the past always gives us inspiration for preparations for the present and the future. In 2022, the strength of the people of the country, their cooperation, their resolve, their expansion of success was of such magnitude that it would be difficult to include all of those in 'Mann Ki Baat'. 2022 has indeed been very inspiring, wonderful in many ways. This year India completed 75 years of her independence and this very year Amritkal commenced. This year the country gained a new momentum, all the countrymen performed one better than the other. The various successes of 2022, today, have created a special place for India all over the world. 2022 i.e. India attaining the status of the world's fifth largest economy; 2022, i.e. the record of India surpassing the incredible figure of 220 crore vaccines; 2022,i.e. India crossing the magical exports figure of 400 billion dollars; 2022, i.e. adopting the resolution of 'Self-reliant India' by the people, enliving it; 2022 meaning welcoming India's first indigenous Aircraft Carrier INS Vikrant, 2022 meaning India's glory in Space, Drone and Defence Sector, 2022 meaning India's might in every field | Even in the field of sports, be it the Commonwealth Games, or the victory of our women's hockey team, our youth have shown tremendous potential.
Friends, along with all this, the year 2022 will always be remembered for one more reason. This is the extension of the spirit of 'Ek Bharat-Shreshtha Bharat'. The people of the country also organized many amazing events to celebrate unity and togetherness. Be it the Madhavpur Mela in Gujarat, where Rukmini's marriage, and Lord Krishna's relationship with the Northeast is celebrated, or the Kashi-Tamil Sangamam, many colors of unity were visible in these festivals. In 2022, the countrymen have scripted another chapter of immortal history. Who can forget the 'Har GharTiranga' campaign organised in the month of August! Those were the moments giving every countryman goose bumps. In this campaign of 75 years of independence, the whole country assumed the hues of the tricolor. More than 6 crore people even sent selfies with the tricolor. This Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav will continue in the same way next year as well - it will further strengthen the foundation of Amrit Kaal.
Friends, this year India has also got the responsibility of chairing the G-20 group. I had also discussed this in detail last time. In the year 2023, we have to take the enthusiasm of G-20 to new heights; make this event a mass movement.
My dear countrymen, today the festival of Christmas is also being celebrated with great fervour all over the world. It is a day to remember the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. I wish you all a Merry Christmas.
Friends, today is also the birthday of our respected Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji. He was a great statesman who gave exceptional leadership to the country. He has a special place in the heart of every Indian. I have received a letter from Aasthaji from Kolkata. In this letter, she has mentioned about her recent visit to Delhi. She writes that during this, she took time out to visit the PM Museum. She liked Atal ji's gallery very much in this museum. The picture clicked there with Atal ji has become memorable for her. In Atal ji's gallery, we can have a glimpse of his valuable contribution to the country. Be it infrastructure, education or foreign policy, he strove to take India to new heights in every field. I once again solemnly bow to Atal ji from the core of my heart.
Friends, tomorrow, the 26th of December is 'Veer Bal Diwas' and I will have the privilege of participating in a programme dedicated to the martyrdom of Sahibzada Zorawar Singh ji and Sahibzada Fateh Singh ji in Delhi on this occasion. The country will always remember the sacrifice of Sahibzade and Mata Gujri.
My dear countrymen, it is said here –
Satyam kim pramanam, pratyaksham kim pramanam.
That is, truth does not require proof, what is evident also does not require proof.
But when it comes to modern Medical Science, the most important thing is - Evidence. Lack of evidence based research in the context of our scriptures like Yoga and Ayurveda has always been a challenge which has been a part of Indian life for centuries- results are visible, but evidence is not. But, I am happy that in the era of Evidence-based medicine, Yoga and Ayurveda are now standing up to the touchstone of tests of the modern era. All of you must have heard about the Tata Memorial center in Mumbai. This institute has earned a name for itself in Research, Innovation and Cancer care. An intensive research done by this center has revealed that yoga is very effective for breast cancer patients. Tata Memorial Center has presented the results of its research in the very prestigious Breast cancer conference held in America. These results have attracted the attention of the world's biggest experts. Because, Tata Memorial center has conveyed with evidence how patients have benefited from Yoga. According to the research of this center, regular practice of yoga has reduced the risk of recurrence and death of breast cancer patients by 15 percent. This is the first example of Indian traditional medicine being tested vis a vis the stringent standards of Western methods. Also, this is the first study, in which yoga has been found to improve the quality of life in women affected by breast cancer. Its long term benefits have also come to the fore. The Tata Memorial Center has presented the results of its study at the European Society of Medical Oncology conference in Paris.
Friends, In today's era, the more evidence-based Indian medical systems are, the more their acceptance will increase in the whole world. With this thought, an effort is also being made in Delhi's AIIMS. Here, the Center for Integrative Medicine and Research was established six years ago to validate our traditional medical practices. Latest Modern Techniques and Research Methods are used in this. The center has already published 20 papers in reputed international journals. A paper published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology describes the benefits of yoga for patients suffering from syncope. Similarly, in a Paper of Neurology Journal, in Migraine, the benefits of yoga have been explained. Apart from these, studies are being done regarding the benefits of yoga in many other diseases as well. Like Heart Disease, Depression, Sleep Disorder and problems faced by women during pregnancy.
Friends, a few days ago I was in Goa for the World Ayurveda Congress. Delegates from more than 40 countries participated in it and more than 550 Scientific Papers were presented here. Around 215 companies from around the world including India displayed their products in the exhibition here. In this expo which went on for four days, more than one lakh people enjoyed their experience related to Ayurveda. Even in the Ayurveda Congress, I reiterated the point for evidence based research to the Ayurveda experts gathered from all over the world. The way we all are seeing the power of Yoga and Ayurveda in this time of the Corona global pandemic, evidence-based research related to these will prove to be very significant. I also urge you that if you have any information about such efforts related to Yoga, Ayurveda and our traditional treatment methods, then do share them on social media.
My dear countrymen, in the last few years we have overcome many major challenges related to the health sector. Full credit for this goes to the willpower of our Medical Experts, Scientists and countrymen. We have eradicated diseases like Smallpox, Polio and 'Guinea Worm' from India.
Today, I would like to tell the listeners of 'Mann Ki Baat' about another challenge, which is now about to end. This challenge, this disease is 'Kala Azar'. The parasite of this disease is spread through the sting of the sand fly. When someone has 'Kala Azar', one has fever for months, there is anemia, the body becomes weak and the weight also decreases. This disease can happen to anyone from children to elders. But with everyone's efforts, this disease named 'Kala Azar' is now getting eradicated rapidly. Till recently, the scourge of Kala-azar had spread in more than 50 districts across 4 states. But now this disease is confined to only 4 districts of Bihar and Jharkhand. I am sure, the strength and awareness of the people of Bihar-Jharkhand will help the government's efforts to eliminate 'Kala Azar' from these four districts as well. I also urge the people of 'Kala Azar' affected areas to keep two things in mind. One is - control of sand fly, and second, diagnosis and complete treatment of this disease as soon as possible. The treatment of 'Kala Azar' is easy; the medicines used for this are also very effective. You just have to be alert. Do not be negligent if you have fever, and also keep spraying medicines that kill the sand fly. Just think, when our country will be free from 'Kala Azar', it will be a matter of joy for all of us. In this spirit of Sab ka Prayas, we are also working towards eradication of T.B. in India, by 2025. You must have seen, in the recent past, when the T.B. Mukt Bharat campaign started, thousands of people came forward to help the T.B. patients. These people, as Nikshay Mitras, are taking care of the patients, helping them financially. This power of public service and public participation achieves every difficult goal with certainty.
My dear countrymen, our tradition and culture have an unbreakable connection with Ma Ganga. Ganga water has been an integral part of our way of life and it is also said in our scriptures:-
Namami Gange Tav Paad Pankajam,
Sur Asurai: Vandit Divya Roopam |
Bhuktim cha muktim cha dadasi nityam,
Bhaav Anusaaren Sadaa Naraanaam ||
Meaning, O Mother Ganga! You bestow worldly happiness, bliss and salvation on your devotees according to their wishes. All worship your holy feet. I also offer my salutations at your holy feet. Amid that, it is a big responsibility of all of us to keep clean Mother Ganges that has been flowing for centuries. With this objective, eight years ago, we started the 'Namami Gange Campaign'. It is a matter of pride for all of us that, today, this initiative of India is getting appreciation from all over the world. The United Nations has included the 'Namami Gange' mission in the world's top ten initiatives to restore the ecosystem. It is even more heartening that 'Namami Gange' has received this honor among 160 such initiatives from all over the world.
Friends, the biggest source of energy behind the 'Namami Gange' campaign is the continuous participation of the people. In the 'NamamiGange' campaign, Ganga Praharis and Ganga Doots also have a big role to play. They are engaged in spreading awareness through planting trees, cleaning ghats, Ganga Aarti, street plays, painting and poems. A lot of improvement is also being seen in Biodiversity due to this campaign. There has been a significant increase in the number of different species of Hilsa fish, Gangetic dolphin and turtles. With Ganga's ecosystem being clean, other livelihood opportunities are also increasing. Here I would like to discuss the ‘Jalaj Ajeevika Model', which has been prepared keeping Biodiversity in mind. This Tourism-based Boat Safaris has been launched at 26 Locations.
Obviously, the spread of the 'Namami Gange' mission, its scope, has increased much more than the cleaning of the river. Whereas this evidence is direct proof of our willpower and tireless efforts, on the other hand, it is also going to show a new path to the world in the direction of environmental protection.
My dear countrymen, when the power of our resolve is strong, even the biggest challenge becomes easy. The example of this has been set by Sange Sherpa ji of Thegu village of Sikkim. For the last 14 years, he is engaged in the work of environmental protection at an altitude of more than 12,000 feet. Sange ji has taken up the task of keeping clean the Tsomgo (Somgo) lake that is of cultural and mythological importance. With his untiring efforts, he has changed the look and feel of this glacier lake. When Sange Sherpa ji started this campaign of cleanliness in the year 2008, he had to face many difficulties. But within no time, along with the youth and villagers, the panchayat also started offering full support in this noble work. Today, if you go to see the Tsomgolake, you will find huge garbage bins all around there. Now the garbage collected here is sent for recycling. Garbage bags made of cloth are also given to the tourists coming here so that the garbage is not strewn around. Now about 5 lakh tourists reach here every year to see this very clean lake. Sange Sherpa has also been honored by many organizations for this unique effort to conserve Tsomgo (Somgo) lake. Due to such efforts, today Sikkim is counted among the cleanest states of India. Along with Sange Sherpa ji and his colleagues, I also heartily appreciate the people engaged in the noble effort of environmental protection across the country.
Friends, I am happy that the 'Swachh Bharat Mission' has become firmly rooted in the mind of every Indian today. Since the inception of this mass movement in the year 2014, to take it to new heights, many unique efforts have been made by the people.
These efforts are being made not only within the society but also on part of the government. The result of these continuous efforts is that - due to the removal of garbage, removal of unnecessary items, a lot of space opens up in the offices, new space is available. Earlier, due to lack of space, offices had to be maintained on rent at far off places. These days, due to this cleanliness, so much space is available, that, now, all the offices are converging at one place. In the past, even the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting also made a lot of effort in its offices in Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Shillong in many cities and because of that, today they have two, three floors, available completely in usage anew. Due to this cleanliness in itself, we are getting the best experience of optimum utilizations of our resources. In the society as well as in the villages, cities and even in the offices; even for the country, this campaign is proving useful in every way.
My dear countrymen, a new awareness is dawning in our country about our art and culture, a new consciousness is awakening. In 'Mann Ki Baat', we often discuss such examples. Just as art, literature and culture are the collective capital of the society, in the same way, it is the responsibility of the whole society to take them forward. One such successful effort is being made in Lakshadweep. There is a club on Kalpeni Island – Kummel Brothers Challengers Club. This club inspires the youth to preserve the local culture and traditional arts. Here the youth are trained in the local art Kolkali, Parichakli, Kilipaat and traditional songs. That is, the old heritage is being protected in the hands of the new generation, is moving forward and friends, I am happy that such efforts are being made not only in the country but also abroad. Recently news came in from Dubai that the Kalari club there has registered its name in the Guinness Book of World Records. Anyone could think that if Dubai's club set a record, what is its relation with India? Actually, this record is related to Kalaripayattu, the ancient martial art of India. This record is for the performance of Kalari by the maximum number of people simultaneously. Kalari club Dubai, together with Dubai Police, planned this and displayed it on the National Day of UAE. In this event, people ranging from 4 years old children to 60 years olds showed their best ability of Kalari. This is a wonderful example of how different generations are carrying forward an ancient tradition, with full inner enthusiasm.
Friends, I would also like to inform the listeners of 'Mann Ki Baat' about 'Quemashree' ji, who lives in Gadak district of Karnataka. In the South, 'Quemshree' has been continuously engaged for the last 25 years in the mission of reviving the art-culture of Karnataka. You can imagine how great his Tpasya is! Earlier he was associated with the profession of Hotel Management. But, his attachment to his culture and tradition was so deep that he made it his mission. He created a platform by the name of 'Kala Chetna'. This platform, today, organizes many programs of artists from Karnataka and from India and abroad. In this, many innovative endeavours are also undertaken to promote local art and culture.
Friends, this enthusiasm of the countrymen towards their art and culture is a manifestation of the feeling of 'pride in our heritage'. In our country, there are so many such colors scattered in every corner. We should also work continuously to adorn and preserve them.
My dear countrymen, many beautiful and useful things are made from bamboo in many areas of the country. There are skilled bamboo artisans, skilled artists, especially in tribal areas. Ever since the country changed the British-era laws related to bamboo, a huge market has developed for it. Even in areas like Palghar in Maharashtra, tribal people make many beautiful products from bamboo. Things like boxes, chairs, teapots, baskets, and trays made of bamboo are becoming very popular. Not only this, these people also make beautiful clothes and decorations from bamboo grass. This is also providing employment to tribal women and their talent is also getting recognition.
Friends, a couple from Karnataka is sending many unique products made from betelnut fiber to the international market. This is a couple from Shivamogga in Karnataka – Shriman Suresh and his wife Shrimati Maithili. These people are making many decorative things ranging from trays, plates and handbags from betel nut fiber. Chappals made of this fiber are also being liked a lot today. Today their products are being sold in London and other markets of Europe. This is the very quality of our natural resources and traditional skills, which is being liked by everyone. In this traditional knowledge of India, the world is looking at ways of a sustainable future. We ourselves also need to be more and more aware in this direction. We ourselves should use such indigenous and local products and gift them to others as well. This will also strengthen our identity, strengthen the local economy, and, in large numbers, brighten the future of the people.
My dear countrymen, now we are slowly moving towards the unprecedented milestone of the 100th episode of 'Mann Ki Baat'. I have received letters from many countrymen, in which they have expressed great inquisitiveness about the 100th episode. I would like it if you send me your suggestions for what we should talk about in the 100th episode and how to make it special. Next time we will meet in the year 2023. I wish you all the best for the year 2023.
May this year also be special for the country, may the country keep touching new heights, and together we have to take a resolution as well as make it come true. At this time many people are also in the mood for holidays. Enjoy these festivals a lot, but be a little cautious too. You are also seeing that, Corona is increasing in many countries of the world, so we have to take more care of precautions like mask and hand washing. If we are careful, then we will also be safe and there will be no hindrance in our enjoyment. With this, once again many best wishes to all of you. Thank you very much, Namaskar.