AjeyoLAST UPDATED: Sept. 27, 2020, 12:50 p.m.
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi once again addressed the country on Sunday through his 'Mann Ki Baat' program.
PM Modi said that farmers are the basis of self-dependent India.
Talking about the contribution of agriculture during the coronavirus pandemic, the Prime Minister said that even during the Corona crisis, the agricultural sector has shown its strong capability.
"Our agricultural sector has again shown its prowess during coronavirus crisis. Our farming sector, our farmers, our villages are the foundation of Aatmanirbhar Bharat. If they are strong, then the foundation of Aatmanirbhar Bharat will also be strong," PM Modi said.
Hailing the contribution of Indian farmers in the 'Atmanirbhar Bharat' initiative, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said that they would benefit too from the new agriculture-related Bills once these become laws.
He pointed out that farmers had benefited after fruits and vegetables were taken off the ambit of the Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee Act in 2014 and now other farmers would benefit too.
They would be able to send their produce wherever they want and also get a good price, the Prime Minister added while addressing the nation in the 69th edition of his monthly radio address 'Mann Ki Baat'.
"In recent times, these sectors have freed themselves from many shackles. Attempts were made to bust many myths. Farmers tell me how new dimensions are being added to agriculture, how farming is changing. I want to share here what they have shared with me," PM Modi asserted.
"Farmers have got the freedom to sell not only fruits/vegetables but anything that they grow like rice, wheat, mustard, sugarcane to anyone paying a better price. 3-4 years ago in Maharashtra, fruits/vegetables were kept out of the ambit of APMC but this has changed," he added.
Earlier, farmers could not sell their produce because of strict laws wherein they were challaned for selling their farm produce outside APMCs.
The new Bills passed by Parliament this month are opposed by different farmer unions and opposition parties.
He also referred to farmers in Haryana, Gujarat and other states for doing well or themselves.
With the fourth anniversary of the Indian Army's surgical strike inside Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) in response to the URI terrorist attack coming up on September 29, PM Modi hailed the Indian armed forces for their fight against terrorism.
"Four years ago, around this time, the world witnessed the courage, bravery and valour of our soldiers during surgical strike. Our brave soldiers had just one mission and goal—to protect the glory and honour of mother India at any cost," PM Modi asserted.
PM Modi also paid tributes to great leaders of the country and specially mentioned Indian revolutionary Bhagat Singh.
"Shaheed Bhagat Singh epitomised courage and team work," he said.
The Prime Minister also emphasised the special bonding within a family and how storytelling can be a catalyst. He also interacted with a group of storytellers from Bengaluru.
"As a family, set aside some time for storytelling. This will be a wonderful experience. Highlight stories relating to great women and men who have made India proud," he said.
"I urge all storytellers to include all inspirational stories from the period of foreign rule as we are going to celebrate 75 years of independence. Especially between 1857 & 1947. We can introduce our new generation to them in form of stories," PM Modi added.
"The history of stories is as ancient as the human civilization itself. .Where there is a soul, there is a story. In India, there has been a rich tradition of storytelling. We're proud to be denizens of land that nurtured a tradition of Hitopadesh and Panch Tantra."
He appealed the Indians to wear face masks and follow two-feet distancing amid the coronavirus pandemic.
"During the coronavirus time-period, I would once again remind you — always wear a mask, do not venture out without a face shield. ‘Do Gaz Ki doori’ will protect you and your family. We shouldn't forget 'Jab tak dawai nahi tab tak koi dhilai nahi'," PM Narendra Modi said.