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Bows to Babasaheb Ambedekar Rajendra Prasad
Pays tributes to Bapu and all those who made sacrifices in the freedom movement
Pays homage to the martyrs of 26/11
“Constitution Day should be celebrated because our path should constantly be evaluated whether it is right or not”
“In the form of family-based parties, India is heading towards a kind of a crisis, which is a matter of concern for the people devoted to the Constitution”
“How can the parties which have lost their democratic character protect democracy ?”
“It would have been better if the duty had been emphasized after the country's independence. In the Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav, it is necessary for us to move forward on the path of duty so that our rights are protected”


Hon’ble President, Vice President, Speaker and all the senior dignitaries sitting on the dais and all the brothers and sisters committed to the Constitution present in the House.

Today is the day to pay homage to far-sighted great personalities like Babasaheb Ambedkar and Dr. Rajendra Prasad. Today is the day to salute this House, because scholars and activists of India had brainstormed for months at this holy place to prepare the groundwork for the bright future of the country. The nectar in the form of the Constitution has brought us here after such a long period of independence. Today we also have to pay our respects to the revered Bapu. Today is also an occasion to pay tribute to those who sacrificed their lives in the freedom struggle. Today, 26/11 is also a sad day for us when the enemies of the country carried out the heinous terrorist attacks in Mumbai. Many of our brave soldiers responsible for protecting the common man of the country as defined in the Constitution of India sacrificed themselves while fighting those terrorists. I also respectfully bow to all those who made supreme sacrifice.

Excellencies, just imagine what would have happened had we been entrusted with the task of writing the Constitution today. Despite the shadow of the freedom movement, the flame of patriotism and the horror of the Partition of India, national interest was supreme and it was the sole mantra in everyone's heart. In today’s context, binding the entire country full of diversities, many languages, dialects, sects and princely states through Constitution and to chart out a strategy to move forward, I do not know if we could have written even one page of the Constitution. Over time, politics has had so much impact that even national interest also takes a backseat at times. I would like to salute those great personalities because they sat together and gave a Constitution with the belief that national interest is supreme despite representing different streams of thoughts.

Friends,

Our Constitution is not just a collection of many articles. Our Constitution is the modern expression of the uninterrupted stream of the great tradition of millennia. Therefore, we need to be devoted to the Constitution in letter and spirit. When we fulfill this constitutional system as a representative of the people from the Gram Panchayat to the Parliament, we have to always keep ourselves committed to the Constitution in letter and spirit. While doing so, we cannot ignore hurting the idea of the Constitution. Therefore, we should celebrate Constitution Day every year because we should evaluate whether our actions are right or wrong in the light of the Constitution. It would have been better to make the tradition of celebrating 26th November as Constitution Day in the country soon after independence and after the Constitution of India came into effect on 26th January (1950) so that our generations could understand how our Constitution was made, who were the people behind it, under what circumstances it was made, why was it made, where, how and for whom does the Constitution take us to. If all these things were discussed every year, then the Constitution, which is considered as a living entity in the world and a social document, could have become a great force for a diverse country for generations. But some people missed the opportunity. What could have been a greater holy occasion (to celebrate the Constitution Day) on the 150th birth anniversary of Babasaheb Ambedkar. That Babasaheb Ambedkar has given a great gift and we should always remember him in the form of this scripture forever. The protest (against this day) is not happening today only. I remember when I was addressing the House in 2015 on Babasaheb Ambedkar’s 125th anniversary, and making this announcement, even then there was resistance. Where did you bring November 26 from? Why are you doing this, what was the need? When you have this feeling then this country is not ready to listen to those who (question) the need to earmark a day to celebrate the adoption of the Constitution which has the name of Babasaheb Ambedkar attached to it. It is a matter of concern not to remember people like Babasaheb Ambedkar who have given so much to the country with an open mind.

Friends,

India is a constitutional democratic tradition. Political parties have their own importance. And political parties are also an important medium to convey the sentiments of our constitution to the people. But, the sentiments of the Constitution have been hurt. Every article of the constitution has also been hurt. How can the parties which have lost their democratic character protect democracy? From Kashmir to Kanyakumari, India is heading towards a crisis which is a matter of concern for those committed to the Constitution and for those who believe in democracy, and that is ‘parivarik’ (dynastic) parties, a political party, party for the family, by the family... I need not say more… Look at all the political parties from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, this is against the spirit of democracy and the Constitution. And when I say dynasties, I do not mean many members of a family cannot do politics. On merit and with the blessings of the people, many members can join politics from a family. This doesn’t make a party dynast. But when a party is run by one family for many generations and the family controlling every aspect of the party, then it becomes the biggest threat to a healthy democracy. Today on Constitution Day, I would like to appeal to every citizen who has trust in the Constitution and who are committed to the Constitution, that there is a need for creating awareness in the country.

There was an experiment in Japan. It was seen in Japan that a handful of political families were dominating the system. Someone had taken it upon him to prepare the citizens, to bring people from outside the political families into the system. It was a success, though it took 30-40 years but had to be done. If democracy has to prosper in our country, we also need to know many things, need to worry and awaken the countrymen. Similarly, does our Constitution allow corruption? There are rules and laws but what concerns most is when somebody, who has been declared corrupt and sentenced by the judiciary, continues to be glorified for political interests. When people disregard the corruption charges against them and start mingling with them for political interests, this also impacts the youth of the country when they see those in the field of politics glorifying the corrupt people. They also start believing that there is nothing wrong in corruption and people start accepting them after two-four years. Do we have to create such a social system? Yes, an opportunity should be given to reform a person if a corruption case has been proved against him. But I think this competition to eulogize such people in public life attracts some people to corrupt ways and it is a matter of concern. This is the virtuous era of independence, the 75 years of independence. The British were engaged in crushing the rights of the citizens of India and it was natural and necessary to fight for the rights of the citizens of India.

Everyone, including Mahatma Gandhi, fought for the rights of the citizens of India. But it is also true that Mahatma Gandhi had constantly tried to prepare the country for duties, even while fighting for rights even during the freedom movement. He continuously tried to sow the seed of cleanliness, adult education, respect for women, empowerment of women, use of khadi and the idea of Swadeshi and self-reliance among the people of the country. But the seeds of duties that Mahatma Gandhi had sown should have become a banyan tree after independence. But unfortunately, such a system of governance developed which only talked about assuring the rights of the people as long as they (political parties) were there. It would have been better if the duty had been emphasized after the independence of the country, then the rights would have been automatically protected. Duty gives a sense of responsibility and duty gives a sense of responsibility towards the society. Rights sometimes lead to a tendency that ‘I should get my rights’ and there is an attempt to frustrate society. With the sense of duty, there is a feeling in a common man that this is my responsibility which I have to fulfill. And when I perform the duty, then someone's right gets automatically protected, respected and honored. A healthy society is created as a result of both duties and rights.

 

 

 

 

 

It is very necessary for us that we walk on the path of protecting the rights through duties during this Amrit Mahtosav of freedom. It is the path of duty in which the rights are guaranteed, it is the path of duty which accepts others’ rights with respect and gives them their due. And when we are celebrating Constitution Day, we should always have this spirit that the rights of everyone will be protected if we continue to walk on the path of duty with a greater degree of devotion and rigor. Today we are fortunate to fulfill the dreams of the freedom fighters with which they had made India. We should leave no stone unturned to fulfill those dreams. I once again congratulate Mr. Speaker Sir for organizing this important occasion. This event was not that of any government, or of any political party, or of any Prime Minister. The Speaker is the pride of the House. It is a dignified post. It is a matter of Babasaheb Ambedkar’s dignity, the dignity of the Constitution. Let us all pray to those great personalities to enlighten us so that we always maintain the dignity of the Speaker's post, maintain the pride of Babasaheb Ambedkar and the Constitution. With this expectation, many thanks to all of you!

 

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Share your ideas and suggestions for 'Mann Ki Baat' now!
July 06, 2022
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Prime Minister Narendra Modi will share 'Mann Ki Baat' on Sunday, July 31st. If you have innovative ideas and suggestions, here is an opportunity to directly share it with the PM. Some of the suggestions would be referred by the Prime Minister during his address.

Share your inputs in the comments section below.