Published On: Sun, Apr 26th, 2020

India’s fight against COVID-19 is people driven: PM in ‘Mann Ki Baat’

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said that India’s fight against the novel coronavirus pandemic is people driven.

Nobody will blame India if the country don’t export medicines to other countries

Speaking in the 64th edition of his monthly radio programme Mann Ki Baat, the Prime Minister said people have been taking lead in various sectors in fight against the deadly virus such as distribution of food to the poor, supply of masks and in following the lockdown measures.

He said that people are rising to the occasion to help each other and stress on the need to wear masks, specially handmade or ‘Gamchha’ (towel).

The Prime Minister also emphasized to eradicate the habit of spitting in fights against COVID-19.

“Look around, you will see how India has taken up a people-drive battle against COVID-19. India’s fight against COVID-19 is people-driven. Every Indian is a soldier in this fight,” Modi said.

Noting when the whole world is struggling with this epidemic, the Prime Minister said when it will be discussed in future, its modalities will be discussed.

“I am sure that this people driven fight of India will definitely be discussed.”

The prime minister lauded the farmers and said that in the middle of this pandemic, the farmers are working hard to ensure that no one sleeps hungry in our country. “Each person is fighting this war as per their capacity. Some are waiving off house rent, also some labourers who are in quarantine at a school are whitewashing the school etc,” said the prime minister.

PM Modi noted that when the world will talk about this fight in future, everyone will about the people-driven initiatives of India. He added that the ‘taali, thalli and diya’ initiatives have kept the spirits high of ordinary Indian.

Thanking everyone for their support in combating coronavirus, the prime minister said that everyone can join the fight as COVID-19 warrior by logging in to covidwarriors.gov.in.

The prime minister praised the people of the country for doing what they are doing during lockdown. “I bow and respect the 130 crore people of this country for what they are doing during this time. Every sector has been innovating during this period. Whether it is people from Aviation or Railways, they are all working to make our lives easier. They are working hard to deliver medicines and other essentials to all parts of the country,” PM Modi said.

Referring to the ordinance brought by the Centre to ensure tough action against those attacking health workers, the prime minister said, “Strict laws have been introduced to ensure action against those attacking the health workers. Health staff including, doctors, nurses, paramedics are the frontline fighters in this war against COVID-19. Hence such a step was necessary for their protection.”

PM Modi said that India extended help to different countries after ensuring adequate supplies of medicines in the country. “Nobody will blame India if the country don’t export medicines to other countries. But we have extended help to countries abroad after ensuring adequate supplies in India,” he noted.

The prime minister also lauded policemen for their exemplary efforts in maintaining law and order during the lockdown. He said that the perception of people towards police has changed and this will plan an important role in future. “Our society has changed. We are realising new factors everyday. We are finding new ways to appreciate people who have been helping us. Many on social media are acknowledging the work being done by our coronavirus warriors. Our perception about our police have also changed significantly. This change in perception will play a huge role in future,” remarked the PM.

Urging the Indians to fall back on “ancient teachings” during the fight against coronavirus, the prime minister said, “People around the world are falling back to Ayurveda and Yoga to fight COVID-19. We need to be more confident about our old teachings. Our youth have to carry forward these teachings.”

PM Modi said that wearing masks would soon become a part of life and we have to accept that this is the new reality. “We need to wear marks. It has become a part of our daily lives. It has not happened before. But this is the new reality. Our perception about masks will change very soon. We are also realising that spitting has become hazardous. We have always been aware of it but we never cared. But now we have to work to end this habit,” he remarked.

PM Modi also highlighted how the coronavirus pandemic has changed celebrations of festivals across the world. “Today we are celebrating Akshay Tritiya, which reminds us that no matter how trying times be, we will keep fighting. The month of Ramzan has begun. Last time during Ramzan we never imagined that something like this will happen. We have to be more resilient and reserved during this Ramzan so that we can celebrate Eid when it comes,” he said.

The prime minister, however, asserted that people should not get over confident and should not presume that coronavirus will not enter their homes, colonies and offices. He urged everyone to remain vigilant. “I appeal to you again, ‘Do Gajj Doori…Bahut hai Zaroori,” noted PM Modi.

The Prime Minister’s address came at a time when the entire country is under complete lockdown — a measure to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus or COVID-19 which has so far claimed 824 lives and over 19,800 confirmed infected cases across the country.

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