NEW DELHI: PM Narendra Modi and Congress president Sonia Gandhi, both the leaders on Wednesday listed out threats and challenges faced by the nation, but, in their own ways. The leaders were speaking in Lok Sabha to mark the 75th anniversary of Quit India movement. While PM Narendra Modi talked about the national issues asking Lok Sabha members to collectively pledge to remove corruption, give rights to the poor, generate employment and end malnutrition, Sonia Gandhi took a jibe apparently at the RSS saying that they played no role in the freedom struggle.
Modi talked about ‘New India’ as he said the coming five years could be as decisive as it was between 1942 and 1947 when the country got independence. The Prime Minister said that if in 1942, the clarion call was “Karenge Ya Marenge,” today the call should be “Karenge aur Karke Rahenge.” The next five years should also be about “Sankalp se Siddhi” – a resolve which will lead us to accomplishment.
Quoting Gandhiji, the PM said that all sections of people joined in, responding to Mahatma Gandhi’s clarion call of "Do or Die".
“In 1942, conditions internationally became favourable for India to get independence. Today again, the global conditions are favourable for India,” he said urging the members of Parliament to rise above differences, and join in a common effort to create an India of the dreams of the freedom fighters in the next five years, from 2017 to 2022, coinciding with the 75th anniversary of independence.
In the nearly 30-minute speech, Modi recalled the role played by Mahatma Gandhi, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Lal Bahadur Shastri, Chandrashekhar Azad, Sukhdev, Jayaprakash Narayan and others. His speech had no mention of Jawaharlal Nehru.
The Prime Minister concluded with the resolve to overcome corruption, give the poor their rights, give youth self-employment, end malnutrition, end barriers to women empowerment, and end illiteracy.
The PM also referred to the enactment of the GST Act saying the way the political parties and state governments had extended support to the legislation, a similar approach would be taken by all concerned to resolve the problems of the country.
After the speech of PM and other leaders, the Lok Sabha resolved to protect democratic values, promote harmony and patriotism and rid the country of corruption.
Sonia takes a jibe at RSS
Congress President Sonia Gandhi also talked about challenges nation is facing, but, she also took a veiled dig at the BJP-led government at the Centre as she wondered whether the ‘forces of darkness’ were trying to destroy the roots of democracy. “Have the forces of darkness emerged? Is there a fear about the existence of a sense of freedom,” she asked as PM Modi and other parliamentarians were seen listening to her.
“We should not forget that there were people and organisations which had opposed the Quit India movement and had played no role in getting our country freedom," she said without taking name of any organisation.
BJP member Kirron Kher shouted ‘travesty, travesty’, as Gandhi made these remarks but was signalled from the treasury benches to remain quiet.
Gandhi also said that during freedom struggle Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru spent several years in jail, many Congress workers died in jail.
AIADMK member says translations of all regional languages should be made available
M Thambidurai of AIADMK started speaking in Tamil in the House on Wednesday on which members complained that they are not able to get the translation. Subsequently, he spoke in English and made it a point that translations in all official languages should be made available.
“Let us pledge to see that all our languages are called national languages and not regional languages. Let us pledge to see that all languages, including Tamil, Telugu, Bengali, etc. are recognised as official languages of this country,” he said.
Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said the facility of translation will be available with the help of technology.