Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that today’s India can never forget the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, one of the biggest on the Indian soil.
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the All India Presiding Officers Conference on the occasion of Constitution Day on Thursday.
Referring to Constitution Day, PM Modi said today is the day to bow down to Bapu’s (Mahatma Gandhi’s) inspiration and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel’s commitment.
“Many such personalities have decided the path of development for India. It was decided five years ago on November 26 to celebrate the day as Constitution Day so as to remember their efforts,” the PM stated.
Here are his key remarks on the occasion:
26/11 Mumbai terror attacks
PM Modi named Pakistan in his address and said that terrorists sent from Pakistan had attacked Mumbai on this day in 2008.
“People from India and many foreign nations were killed. I pay homage to them as well as police and security forces personnel who died while fighting the terrorists,” the PM stated.
He added that today’s India can never forget the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, one of the biggest on the Indian soil.
“Today’s India is fighting terrorism with ‘new niti and new riti’,” the PM said.
On Constitution, Emergency and more
Speaking on the Constitution, the PM noted that an effort was made to destroy the tradition of separation of power during the 1970s but an answer to this attempt was also given via Constitution.
“After Emergency, the system of Checks and Balances got strengthened. The Legislature, Executive and Judiciary, all three learned a lot from that period (of Emergency) and progressed,” the PM told the conference.
“130 crore Indians have exhibited maturity and one of the biggest reasons behind that is their trust in all three arms of the Constitution,” he added.
The PM noted that both houses have Parliament have worked for more hours than planned. “MPs have also implemented a cut in their salaries to show their commitment. Many state MLAs have also donated a part of their salaries to contribute in the fight against coronavirus,” he said.
The PM referred to the recently-concluded Bihar elections and said the world has witnessed India’s strong electoral processes amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. “The strength derived from the Constitution helps make such difficult tasks easier,” Modi said.
The PM also raised the pitch for simultaneous Lok Sabha and Assembly elections. He said: “One nation, one election is not a matter of debate only, this is the need for India.”
The PM also suggested a single voters’ list for Lok Sabha, Assembly and panchayat polls, arguing separate lists were waste of resources.
Without naming the Congress, the PM also hit out at previous governments for stalling development projects. Referring to Sardar Sarovar Dam at Kevadia, the PM said the dam project was stalled for years. And those responsible for this delay don’t even regret their actions.
The link between rights and duties
The PM recalled that Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi was clear in his vision for fundamental rights and duties, which he said were interlinked.
“Our Constitution has many features but one very special feature is the importance given to duties. Mahatma Gandhi was very keen about this. He saw a close link between rights & duties. He felt that once we perform our duties, rights will automatically be safeguarded,” the PM stated.
Referring to KYC (Know Your Customer), PM coined the term ‘Know Your Constitution’ and said the same could help strengthen our constitutional safeguards.
The PM suggested that the language of law should be so simple that any common man could understand it.
There is also a need to have a simplified procedure to scrap laws which have lost relevance with time.
“Can’t we put in place a system wherein like we amend old laws, the scrapping of such laws can also happen automatically,” the PM asked.