Calling on the nation to be cautious of the rampant digital fraud which had several people in its vicious grip, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said that one must avoid messages and e-mails which can lure people into false schemes and result in severe loss of finances.
Asserting that this was a new form of robbery using technology as a medium, the Prime Minister in his 22nd edition of monthly radio programme Mann Ki Baat said that people must learn to resist the temptation of lucrative deals promising unreal benefits.
“We get messages on our cell phones and on our e-mail about money-spinning schemes saying that incredible profit is in store. But it is nothing but a trap waiting to rob you off all your hard earned money. And since technology plays a major role when it comes to maintaining finances, there are also those who are misusing this medium,” he said.
The Prime Minister asked people to protect themselves from such fraudulent schemes.
Talking about the floods that have hit some parts of the country, he said the Centre is working closely with states to help the affected people.
“Sometime back, we were concerned about drought but now we are enjoying the rains and there are reports about floods. The state governments and the Centre are working closely, making all efforts to help the flood-affected people,” he siad.
A number of states, including Assam and Bihar, are reeling under floods, which have killed over scores of people and caused widespread damage to property.
He also talked about a number of other subjects, including the participation of Indian athletes in the Rio Olympics, upcoming Independence day celebrations, digital fraud, his recent visit to South Africa and passage of a bill by Parliament that will unlock over Rs 40,000 crore to states for afforestation.
During the 35-minute broadcast, he spoke about the need to curb maternal mortality rate and said government hospitals will offer free health check-up on 9th of every month which poor pregnant women should avail of. He urged gynaecologists, who do not work in government hospitals, to devote one day for this purpose, saying lakhs of such doctors are required.
Exhorting youth to go for research to find technological solutions to such problems, Modi referred to the ‘Atal Innovation Mission’ (AIM) through which the government intends to create an ecosystem of innovation, experiment and entrepreneurship and generate jobs.
“If we have to prepare next generation innovators, we will have to connect our children with the AIM. That is why, the central government has taken the initiative of Atal Tinkering Labs,” he said.
Whichever school establishes these labs, it will get Rs 10 lakh and an equal amount for maintenance of these labs for five years, the Prime Minister said.
Noting that innovation is directly linked to ‘Incubation Centre’, he said under the Atal Incubation Centre programme, the government plans to earmark an amount of Rs 10 crore.
Inviting youth to do research and invent solutions Inviting youth to do research and invent solutions through technology to the problems they see, the Prime Minister referred to the ‘Atal Grand Challenges’ and said, “the government of India wants to reward technology that is developed to address our problems.”
He said this will be the real tribute to former President A P J Abdul Kalam, whose first death anniversary was observed four days back.
“The more our young generation works for research, innovation, inventing technology for solutions to our daily life problems and provide an easy relief from our problems, it will contribute immensely to making of the modern India of 21st century and that will be the real tribute to Abdul Kalam,” Modi said.
He began his programme with reference to the Rio Olympics and asked people to create a campaign to encourage India’s participants in this mega sporting event.
Underlining that participation in the games is more important than winning of losing, he asked the countrymen to extend their wishes to the Indian participants. “For transmitting your messages of good wishes, the Prime Minster of the country is ready to become a postman,” he said.
Turning to the upcoming 70th Independence Day celebrations, Modi said the country should also celebrate the 75th anniversary of Quit India Movement on August 8.
He asked the countrymen to celebrate these events like a festival by creating an atmosphere of nationalism. “This should not remain a government function but a celebration of the countrymen. Like a Diwali, it should be our own festival,” he said hoping that people will send pictures filled with nationalism to his App.
Modi, who will be addressing the nation from the ramparts of the historic Red Fort for the third time this Independence Day, also invited suggestions from the people for inclusion in his speech.
“You may be having something which you would want to be told to the nation from the Red Fort.”
“I invite you to write to me whatever feelings you have, what you feel that as your representative, as your ‘pradhan sevak’ (prime servant), I should say from the Red Fort... Give suggestions, give advice, give new ideas. I will try to convey those to all the countrymen...,” the Prime Minister said.
“I don’t want that whatever is spoken from the ramparts of the Red Fort is only what the Prime Minister wants to say. Whatever is spoken from the ramparts of the Red Fort should be what 125 crore countrymen want to say,” he added.
Talking about climate change, Modi referred to the passage of the CAMPA bill by Parliament which will unlock over Rs 40,000 crore that will be distributed among states as compensation for damage caused to forestation due to development.
In this context, he exhorted people to undertake afforestation in the form of a public movement, which he said had been done in some states.
Noting that during the rainy season, diseases like dengue occur, he asked people to take care, particularly since it attacks the well-off people.
He also advised people not to take antibiotics without a doctor’s prescription.
Referring to this South Africa trip, he said it was a like a “pilrimage” for him as he had visited the places and travelled by a train associated with Mahatma Gandhi in the land of Nelson Mandela.