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PM’s interaction with soldiers of Indian Armed Forces on the occasion of Diwali at Nowshera in J&K

PM’s interaction with soldiers of Indian Armed Forces on the occasion of Diwali at Nowshera in J&K

Bharat Mata Ki Jai!

Bharat Mata Ki Jai!

Bharat Mata Ki Jai!

Today is the holy festival of Diwali and everyone wishes to celebrate Diwali among their family members. I also feel that I should celebrate Diwali among my family members and that’s why I come among my family members every time to celebrate Diwali because you are my family, I am a member of your family. I have not come here as a Prime Minister. I have come as a member of your family. I have the similar feeling when I come among all of you and when I go to my family. It has been more than 20 years since I am handling this constitutional responsibility and the countrymen have given me this opportunity for a very long time. Earlier the people of Gujarat and now the countrymen gave me this opportunity. I have spent every Diwali with you and my family members posted at the border. Today I have come again among you, I will return with new energy, enthusiasm and belief from you. But I have not come here alone. I have brought with me the blessings of 130 crore countrymen, a lot of blessings for you. Every lamp on the occasion of Diwali today will be towards your bravery, valor, sacrifice and austerity and to all those who are engaged in protecting the nation and the flame of lamp of every citizen of India will continue to wish you. And today I am sure when you will talk to your family at home today, maybe even sending photos; you will say that Diwali this year was special. Will you? Be relaxed, nobody is watching you, so don’t worry. Well, will you also tell your family that you ate a lot of sweets also?

Friends,

Today, the heroes and the brave daughters of the country in front of me are doing such service to Mother India and not everybody is fortunate. Only a few people have this good fortune. And you have got this privilege. I can see and feel that indomitable sentiment on your faces. You are full of determination and this resolve, the apogee of your valour, are the abiding protection shield of Mother Bharati whether it is the Himalayas, the deserts, the snowy peaks, the deep waters or wherever you are. The passion within you gives confidence to the 130 crore countrymen and they can sleep peacefully. The country feels an assured sense of peace, security and confidence because of your might. It is because of your valor that there is radiance in our festivals, there is happiness all around and it adds grandeur to our festivals. Soon after Deepawali, there will be Govardhan Puja, Bhaiya Dooj and Chhath festivals. Along with you, I convey my best wishes to the countrymen for all these festivals from this heroic land of Nowshera. In many parts of our country, people start the New Year a day after Diwali. Accounting is completed on Diwali and a new financial year begins on the next day of Diwali. Especially in Gujarat, tomorrow is the New Year. So today, I offer many good wishes to the people of Gujarat and wherever the people celebrate the New Year from this heroic land of Nowshera.

Friends,

When I landed on the holy land of Nowshera, touched the soil here, I felt a different feeling, a different excitement. The history of this land salutes the valor of the Indian Army and that can be heard from every peak. The present here is a living example of the valor of brave soldiers like you. The living proof of bravery is before me. Nowshera has acted as a sentinel of Kashmir and Srinagar by giving a befitting reply to every war, proxy and conspiracy. Soon after independence, the enemies kept an evil eye on it. Nowshera was attacked and the enemies sitting atop tried to capture it. And just now after watching the video I got an opportunity to comprehend everything and I am happy that all the conspiracies lay in shatters in front of the valour of the brave people of Nowshera.

Friends,

The enemy had realized the strength of the Indian Army in the early days itself. I bow to the lion of Nowshera, Brigadier Mohammad Usman and Naik Jadunath Singh who made the supreme sacrifice for the defence of the country. I salute Lt R.R. Rane who paved the way for the Indian Army’s victory. There are so many heroes who have written tales of pride with their blood, valor, efforts and the determination to live and die for the country on this land of Nowshera. I am fortunate that I got the privilege of being blessed by two such great men on the holy festival of Diwali. It is a kind of priceless legacy in my life. I got the blessings from Shri Baldev Singh ji and Shri Basant Singh ji, both these great men stood shoulder to shoulder with the army in the absence of resources to protect Mother Bharati in their childhood. And when I was listening to them, they had the same spirit and disposition and the way they were describing it as if they had returned from the battlefield today. In the post-independence war, many such local teenagers played the role of child soldiers under the guidance of Brigadier Mohammad Usman. Without caring about their life, they had worked along with the country’s army, helped the army at such a young age. This course of valor of Nowshera, which has started since then, has never stopped, has never bowed down and this is what Nowshera is all about. The role played by this brigade in the surgical strike fills every countryman with pride. I always remember that day because I had decided that everyone should come back before dawn. I was sitting by phone waiting for the news of the return of my brave soldiers safely after accomplishing their job. There were countless malicious attempts to create unrest here and they happen even today after the surgical strike, but every time terrorism gets a befitting reply. There is a natural motivation in this land against falsehood and injustice. I believe that this is a great inspiration in itself. It is believed that Pandavas also spent some time in this region during their exile. I feel connected to the energy here in the midst of all of you today.

Friends,

Currently, the country is celebrating 75 years of its independence, the Amrit Mahotsav of freedom. We have achieved this freedom by making innumerable sacrifices during the long period of servitude. It is our responsibility to protect this freedom. We have new goals, new resolutions and new challenges in the virtuous period of independence. In such an important period, today’s India is conscious about its powers and also about its resources. Unfortunately, it was assumed earlier that the army would get the resources only from abroad. We had to buckle in the matter of technology and had to spend more money. The process to buy new weapons and equipment went on for years. If an officer initiated the file, the particular equipment would not arrive till his retirement. Such was the period! As a result, weapons were bought in a hurry at the time of need. Even for spare parts, we used to depend on other countries.

Friends,

The resolve to be self-reliant in the defence sector is a formidable way to change those old situations. About 65 percent of the defence budget is now being spent on procurement within the country itself. Our country can do all this and it has demonstrated it as well. In an unprecedented step, India now has also decided to procure more than 200 defence related equipment from within the country. This is the resolution of the AatmaNirbhar Bharat. More items are going to be added in the next few months and this positive list, which will make the country self-reliant, will get longer. This will strengthen the defence sector of the country and investment will also increase for the manufacture of new weapons and equipment.

Friends,

Today Arjun tanks and the state-of-the-art Light Combat Aircraft like Tejas are being built within our country. Recently, seven new defence companies have also been dedicated to the nation on the day of Vijayadashami. The ordnance factories that we had will now manufacture modern defence equipment in specialized sectors. Today our private sector is also becoming an ally in this resolve to protect the nation. Many of our new defence start-ups are making their mark today. Our youth, who are 20-22-25 years old, are coming up with new innovations. It is a matter of pride.

Friends,

Defence corridors being built in Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu are going to accelerate this speed further. All these steps that we are taking today will strengthen India’s capability as well as our identity as a defence exporter.

Friends,

It is written in our scriptures:

को अतिभारः समर्थानाम।

That is, the overburden does not matter to the one who is capable, he easily realizes his resolutions. Therefore, we need to increase our military power according to the changing world, the changing nature of war. They also have to be molded with new strength. We have to adapt our preparations according to this rapid change taking place in the world. At one time, battles were fought with elephants and horses. Now no one can imagine this because the form has changed. Earlier, it might have taken decades, maybe centuries, to change the form of war. Today, the method of fighting changes from morning to evening because of rapid technology. Today’s art of warfare is not limited to the modus operandi of operations. Today, better coordination of different aspects, use of technology and hybrid tactics can make a huge difference. Organized leadership and better coordination in action is very important today. Therefore, continuous reforms are being done at every level in the last few years. Be it the appointment of the Chief of Defence Staff or the formation of the Department of Military Affairs, they are playing an important role in keeping our military power in step with the changing times.

Friends,

Modern border infrastructure is also going to strengthen our military strength. The people of the country are very well aware of the connectivity work of the border areas happening previously. Now modern roads, big tunnels, bridges and optical fiber networks are being laid from Ladakh to Arunachal Pradesh, from Jaisalmer to Andaman and Nicobar Islands, and in our border areas where there was no normal connectivity. This has not only led to an unprecedented improvement in our deployment capability, but is also providing a lot of convenience to the soldiers.

Friends,

Serious efforts are being made in every sector in the last seven years to make women power the potential of a new and capable India. The participation of the daughters of India is now moving towards a new height in the field of defence. Now the role of women is also expanding in the Army after their deployment on the front lines in the Navy and Air Force. After opening the doors of the military police to daughters, women officers are being given permanent commission as part of the expansion of this partnership. Now the country’s premier military institutions like National Defence Academy, Rashtriya Military School and Rashtriya Indian Military College are being thrown open for daughters. On 15th August this year, I had also announced from the Red Fort that daughters will now also get an opportunity to study in all the Sainik Schools across the country. Work has started on this too.

Friends,

Not only do I see profound power in the uniform of the defenders of the country like you, when I look at you, I see irresistible service, unshakable determination and incomparable sensitivity. Therefore, the army of India is different from any other army in the world, it has a different identity. You are a professional force like the top armies of the world, but your human values and Indian culture make you an extraordinary personality and you stand out from others. Joining the army is not a job which pays you salary on the first date of every month. It is a sense of accomplishment for you to join the army! Just like sages and seers used to do penance, I can see the form of that seeker within each one of you. It is your devotion towards Mother Bharati. You are taking life to such a height in which the life of 130 crore countrymen gets absorbed within you. This is the path of atonement and we are the people who find our highest ideal in Lord Rama. When Lord Rama returned to Ayodhya after conquering Lanka, he proclaimed:

अपि स्वर्ण मयी लंका, न मे लक्ष्मण रोचते। जननी जन्म भूमिश्च स्वर्गादपि गरीयसी॥

That is, we have definitely won Lanka which is rich in gold and prosperity, but our fight was to protect our principles and humanity. For us, our native land is ours, we have to return here and live for it. Therefore, when Lord Rama returned, the entire Ayodhya welcomed him as a mother. Every person of Ayodhya and the entire country organized Diwali. This idea makes us different from others. This lofty spirit of ours places us on that immortal pinnacle of human values ​​which remains steadfast in the tumult of time, even in the hustle and bustle of civilizations. History is made and destroyed. Powers come and go. Empires soar, collapse, but India was immortal thousands of years ago, India is immortal today, and will remain immortal even after thousands of years. We do not see the nation as a form of rule, power and empire. For us it is a living soul. Its protection is not limited to protecting the geographical boundaries. The defence of the nation for us means protecting this national vitality, national unity and national integrity! Our armies have soaring bravery and along with that there is humanity and compassion in their hearts. That is why our armies do not exhibit valor only on the borders. They are there whenever the country needs them during calamities, disasters, diseases and epidemics. There is an unwavering belief of the country today that India’s armies turn up where no one reaches. There is an instinctive feeling in the mind of every Indian not to worry when they see the Indian army. This is not a small matter. You are the sentinel of the integrity and universality of the country; you are the sentinel of the resolve of ‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’ (One India, Supreme India). I am sure that with the inspiration of your bravery, we will take our India to the highest heights.

Friends,

Happy Diwali to you too! Best wishes to your family members and I also salute those mothers who give birth to brave sons and daughters like you. I once again wish you all a very Happy Diwali. Utter Bharat Mata Ki Jai with all your might with me! Bharat Mata Ki Jai! Bharat Mata Ki Jai!

Thanks!