Stressing the government’s efforts to strengthen democracy in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said that the Republic becomes strong “by public participation”, “by everyone’s effort”, and “by performing one’s duties towards the country”.

Addressing people on the first episode of ‘Mann ki Baat’ in 2023, Modi highlighted that domestic patent filings have outscored the country’s foreign patent filings and expressed confidence that India’s dream of “techade” will be fulfilled on the strength of its innovators.

Besides, he touched on issues like millets, wetlands, e-waste recycling, the purple fest in Goa, and the winter games in Kashmir.

“We all know that knowledge is paramount in the global economy of the 21st century. I believe that the dream of India’s techade will definitely be fulfilled on the strength of our innovators and their patents. With this, we all will be able to take full advantage of world-class technology and products prepared in our own country,” Modi said through the radio broadcast.

‘Rise in domestic patent filings’

On the country’s increasing scientific capabilities, he said that the premier Indian Institute of Science (IISc) had record 145 patents in 2022 — two patents every five days.

He said India’s rank in patent filing is seventh globally — patent registration has risen by 50 per cent in the last five years, helping ranking in the global innovation index to improve to 40 from below 80 in 2015.

The Prime Minister said for the first time in the last 11 years in India, the number of domestic patent filings was seen more than foreign filing, which indicates the growing scientific prowess of the country.

Appealing to people to spread the word that India is the “Mother of Democracy”, he said, “We should constantly think deeply about this topic, discuss it and also inform the world. This will further strengthen the spirit of democracy in the country.”

Citing an instance of Anubhav Mandapam of Lord Basaveshwara of the 12th century, he said it is another example of democratic values in the history of our country.

“Here, free debate and discussion were encouraged. You will be surprised to know that it is even before the Magna Carta,” he said. Magna Carta, the charter of English liberties, was granted by King John on June 15, 1215, which is considered the foundation of moving to democracy from monarchy in the world.

‘Mother of Democracy’

Modi, referring to a book titled ‘India: The Mother of Democracy’ said, “Democracy is in our veins, it is in our culture — it has been an integral part of our work for centuries. By nature, we are a democratic society. Dr Ambedkar compared the Buddhist monks union to the Indian parliament. He described it as an institution where there were many rules for motions, resolutions, quorum, voting, and counting of votes. Babasaheb believed that Lord Buddha must have got inspiration from the political systems of that time.”

He also said that an inscription of 1,100-1,200 years ago in Utirmerur village in Tamil Nadu is like a mini-constitution. It has been explained in detail how the Gram Sabha should be conducted and what the procedure for selection of its members shall be.

Modi added that the traditions of the Kakatiya dynasty kings of Warangal were also very famous. The book also has good information on community-driven and consensus-driven decision-making in Oraon and Munda tribes of Central India, Modi said.

The Prime Minister said that just as people have made yoga and fitness a part of their lives by taking active participation on a large scale, similarly people are adopting millets on a large scale, making these cereals a part of their diet.