iconimg Friday, July 31, 2015

Tania Goklany, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, August 15, 2014
Narendra Modi, the first Prime Minister to have been born in independent India, delivered his maiden Independence Day speech from Delhi's Red Fort on Friday. Speaking extempore from the imposing fort, Modi promised to make India a strong manufacturing country, empower its poor with access to finance and give states a bigger role in making policies and decisions for the Indian economy.

Journalists on Twitter had a mixed response to Modi's speech. Some gushed about how refreshing his style was, while others had a few advice for the Prime Minister.

"Probably a first in India's history, a prime minister talks about a ten-year agenda from the red fort [sic]," tweeted Shekhar Gupta, vice-chairman of the India Today Group.

That his speech was a break with tradition as he didn't read out from a prepared text and didn't dole out schemes as past PMs have often done while delivering Independence Day speeches, touched a chord with a few.

"Modispeak: India needs clean, green, digital, woman-sensitive, quality-conscious, rural-focused citizen-active non-plan governance", tweeted Hindustan Times journalist Madhavan Narayanan.

"Forceful, powerful, moving & refreshingly different speech from @narendramodi. Broke rigid formality of past, restored people's interest," NDTV editor Barkha Dutt tweeted about Modi's speech which lasted for over an hour.

His announcement that the Planning Commission will be wrapped up because it is no longer relevant too got a thumbs up.

Wearing a cream short-sleeved kurta and a saffron turban, Modi announced an initiative for villages called Sansad Aadarsh Gram Yojna where he asked each MP to select a village in his constituency and convert it into a "model village" by 2016.

"Anna Hazare implemented the model village concept in Ralegan Siddhi. Wish @PMOIndia recognised him too," was former CNN-IBN editor-in-chief Rajdeep Sardesai's reaction on Twitter.

Here are a few more tweets on his speech: