Prime Minister Narendra Modi lauded on Sunday the courage of soldiers and thanked the nation for sending them Diwali messages. He also had some other messages for the nation. Take a look at them.
Vallabhbhai Patel, anti-sikh riots
Modi urged people to mark Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel’s birth anniversary as he remembered the scars of the anti-Sikh riots of 1984.
“Tomorrow (Monday) we are celebrating Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel’s birth anniversary. He worked to bring everyone together, he worked for unity, fought for unity and brought unity amongst people and we all must remember it.”
Modi also said, “History remembers how Sikh people and ‘sardars’ all over the country faced violence and pain” after former PM Indira Gandhi was assassinated on October 31, 1984.
Guru Nanak’s teachings
Modi remembered Guru Nanak and how his life and teachings hold message for the people of today.
“Principles of service, truthfulness and welfare of all are the core of his teachings,” he said.
Modi, co-relating the teaching of Guru Nanak and his government’s motto, said: “Guru Nanak Dev’s teachings inspire us to shun discrimination of all kind. ‘Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas’ is based on the same mantra of non-discrimination, given by Guru Nanak Dev.”
Modi highlighted the importance of Chhath festival, saying it is the only festival when people worship the setting sun.
“Chhath is a very big festival in eastern India and it is celebrated with great fervour and it goes on for four days,” he said.
“There is a saying across the world that people worship the shining sun, but Chhath is the only festival in which people offer ‘arghya’ (offering water) to the setting sun, which gives a great social message,” he said.
The Chhath Puja is performed in order to thank lord Sun, who is considered the god of energy. Sun is worshiped to promote well-being, prosperity and progress.
‘Diwali is festival of cleanliness’
Modi wished the nation on the occasion of Diwali, and said this is a festival associated with cleanliness.
“Diwali is a festival that is also associated with cleanliness. Everybody cleans their homes,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister said Diwali gives the message to move from darkness to light.
“Diwali is a festival that is being celebrated world over,” Modi said.
Open defecation-free India
He expressed happiness over the progress being made in all states of India to make the country Open Defecation Free (ODF).
Modi praised people helping their respective areas to become ODF. The Prime Minister talked about an incident where an army personnel donated thousand of rupees to help make his village Open Defecation Free.
“Vikas Thakur of ITBP, who was on a holiday in a village in Himachal Pradesh, came to know that some people in his village were unable to build toilets in their homes because of want of money. He immediately gave Rs 5,700 to village Pradhan asking him to help build toilets for 57 families in the villages,” he said.
Modi also expressed satisfaction over other states like Kerala, Haryana and others for their efforts to become ODF states.