Independence Day speech: From Article 370 to Triple Talaq, PM Modi presents 70-day report card to convey govt in action

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Published: August 15, 2019 10:27:26 AM

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said that within 10 weeks of returning to power, his government took key decisions to fulfil the aspirations of people and cited the new law on triple talaq and scrapping of special status accorded to Jammu and Kashmir.

Narendra Modi Independence Day SpeechPrime Minister Narendra Modi addresses the nation from the ramparts of the Red Fort on the occasion of 73rd Independence Day on Thursday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s address to the nation from the ramparts of the Red Fort was laced with a mix of what the government has achieved so far in its tenure of 10 weeks and presenting a vision of what it hopes to achieve in the coming five years of its second term. Making special note of the numerous decisions that the government has taken, including those passed by the Parliament, the Prime Minister said that his was a government in action and proudly so. In his 92-minute Independence Day speech, his straight and the longest so far, the PM referred to the mandate his government received in the general elections to say that “people’s trust in us has given us new strength”.

He said that the mandate shows that hopelessness has given way to hope among masses and while the first term of his government from 2014 to 2019 saw his government improve the ease of living and meet the people’s necessities, the coming five years will be about fulfilling their aspirations. Promising that his government will work harder in the next five years, PM Modi said, “If 2014-19 was an era to fulfill people’s needs, the time since 2019 is about meeting aspirations and dreams.”

The Prime Minister also took to opportunity to list the work done by his government in the two months since his government took charge. PM Modi said that in the 10 weeks of coming to power, the government took key steps to fulfill aspirations of people. He said that issues that were not addressed in the last 70 years have been addressed by his government in 70 days. PM Modi noted that when the country can do away with the Sati system, end child marriage, why not triple talaq. He also came down heavily on those who are opposing the government’s decision to end the special status of Jammu and Kashmir by abolishing Article 370 of the Constitution.

Triple talaq

PM Modi said that his government’s first decision after assuming office for the second term was to get the Triple Talaq Bill passed by the Parliament. He said that the decision to enact a law to end the practice of triple talaq by Muslim men will help Muslim women live with pride. PM Modi said that scrapping of triple talaq will help Muslim women live a better life and urged the political parties not be see it through a political prism. “If we can take steps against Sati custom, female foeticide and dowry, then why not against instant triple talaq,” he said. The Prime Minister also noted that several Islamic nations have already declared the practice of triple talaq illegal but India couldn’t because of political reasons.

Article 370

Without naming the Congress party, he asked why Article 370 was left as a temporary provision if it was “so important”. He said the previous governments should have made it a permanent provision of the Constitution if they considered it so important and life-changing. Stating that his government neither nurses problems nor keep them pending, PM Modi referred to the scrapping of special status to Jammu and Kashmir, saying India now is one nation with one constitution. He said that different governments made efforts in the last 70 years to deal with Kashmir, but it did not bear results. A new approach was needed, he said. PM Modi also said the decision to repeal Article 370 was a step towards fulfilling Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel’s dream.

National Medical Commission Bill

The Prime Minister also made a reference to the passage of the National Medical Commission Bill, 2019 to say it has path-breaking provisions that will help the doctors. He said that the country needs more doctors and the latest decision will help the medical students. “Our country has a huge shortage of doctors and medical systems. To plug these shortages new laws, new systems, new thinking are needed. To that end, we have made new laws,” he said.

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