In a letter addressed to all Indians, Mr. Modi recaps the many decisions taken by his second successive government in its first year

Marking the first anniversary of his second successive full majority government at the Centre, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a letter addressed to all Indians, reminded them not only of the bold decisions taken by his government in the last year, but, in a reference to the raging COVID-19 pandemic, exhorted them to “remember that the present and future of 130 crore will never be dictated by an adversity”.

“We will decide our present and future,” Mr. Modi said.

He recapped the many decisions taken by his second successive government in its first year, describing the vote as one for continuity of the work his government had done between 2014-19 and squarely addressed the way his government was handling the COVID-19 pandemic. Mr. Modi said when the pandemic broke, everyone assumed that India would flounder in its handling.

But, Mr. Modi said the country displayed its unity and resolve in all spheres in dealing with the disease outbreak.

“In a crisis of this magnitude, it can certainly not be claimed that no one suffered any inconvenience or discomfort. Our labourers, migrant workers, artisans and craftsmen in small scale industries, hawkers and such fellow countrymen have undergone tremendous suffering,” he wrote.

“However, we have to take care to ensure that inconveniences that we are facing do not turn into disasters. Hence it is very important for every Indian to follow rules and guidelines. We have displayed patience so far and we should continue to do so,” he wrote a day before Lockdown 4.0 is to end, adding that it was a “long battle” against COVID-19, but that “victory was our collective resolve.”

An auto rickshaw driver wearing a T-shirt with a picture of Prime Minister Narendra Modi waits for passengers in New Delhi on May 26, 2020.  
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The Prime Minister also took the opportunity to comment on the spirit behind many of the bold decisions that his government had taken or had to react to.

“(The dilution of ) Article 370 furthered the spirit of national unity and integration. The Ram Mandir judgement, delivered unanimously by the Honourable Supreme Court of India, brought an amicable end to a debate persisting for centuries. The barbaric practice of Triple Talaq has been confined to the dustbin of history. Amendment to the Citizenship Act was an expression of India’s compassion and spirit of inclusiveness,” he wrote.

For the future, the Prime Minister Modi dwelt at length over the economic challenge posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, stating that the spirit of self reliance or atmanirbharta was the only way forward.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses the nation on May 12, 2020. Photo: DD News/PTI  

 

“At such a time, there is also a widespread debate on how the economies of various countries, including India’s will recover. However, given the way India has surprised the world with its unity and resolve in the fight against coronavirus, there is a firm belief that we will also set an example in economic revival,” he said. He added that the initiatives announced by his government as part of the ₹20-lakh-crore package will “usher in a new era of opportunities for every Indian, be it our farmers, workers, small entrepreneurs or youth associated with start ups.”

He quoted a Sanskrit Shloka that translated to “if we have action and duty on one hand, then success is assured on the other” signing off as “Pradhan Sewak” or “chief servitor”.

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