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‘Clear mandate in polls’: President Ram Nath Kovind in address to joint Parliament session

President Ram Nath Kovind said the government has hit the ground running and taken many decisions to improve the lives of people in the 21 days after oath.

india Updated: Jun 20, 2019 13:17 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
President Ram Nath Kovind addresses join session of Parliament on Thursday.
President Ram Nath Kovind addresses join session of Parliament on Thursday.(ANI)
         

Addressing the joint sitting of parliament on Thursday after constitution of the 17th Lok Sabha President Ramnath Kovind on Thursday underlined that NDA government had come back to power with a stronger mandate than last time on the strength of its performance since its first term beginning 2014.

“In the elections, people have given a clear mandate… This is a mandate to continue the development journey uninterrupted and accelerate it,” President Kovind said who spent a significant part of his 60-minute speech to stress the achievements of the government so far before outlining the government’s vision.

The government has hit the ground running and taken many decisions to improve the lives of people in the 21 days after oath, President Kovind said counting the cabinet decision to expand the scheme to give financial assistance to all farmers and a pension for shopkeepers as some examples.

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For the future, President Kovind spoke in some detail about the water challenge facing the country. He appealed to people to take up water conservation just as they had adopted Swachh Bharat because the water scarcity is going to be the biggest challenges of this century. “Climate change and global warming will lead to worsening of this problem,” he said.

President Kovind, who had earlier spoken about the high participation of women in voting and election of a record 78 women MPs, also underscored on steps taken for empowerment of women and ensuring their security. In this context, he also pitched for putting an end to malpractices such as triple talaq and nikah halala.

“To secure equal rights for every sister and daughter in the country, eradication of social evils like ‘Triple Talaq’ and ‘Nikah-Halala’ is imperative. I would urge all the members to cooperate in these efforts to make the lives of our sisters and daughters better and dignified,” he said, a reference to the government’s law to make triple talaq a crime that has been stuck due to resistance from the opposition in the Rajya Sabha where the BJP-led national coalition does not have a majority.

“Empowerment of women is one of the highest priorities of my government. The empowerment of women and their effective participation in society and economy is the test of a developed society,” President Kovind said.

President Kovind, who listed the government’s priorities in its second term, also signaled a renewed focus on agriculture, farmers and rural areas. Over the next few years, he said the government would spend Rs 25 trillion to improve farm productivity.

First Published: Jun 20, 2019 11:34 IST

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