President hails agri reforms, asserts Centre devoted to farmers’ welfare

Our Bureau. New Delhi | Updated on January 25, 2021

President Ram Nath Kovind addresses the nation on the eve of Republic Day 2021, in New Delhi on Monday

‘Economic reforms have been supplemented with reforms in labour and agriculture ’

President Ram Nath Kovind, addressing the nation on the eve of Republic Day, said the Centre remains singularly devoted to farmers’ welfare.

He justified the reform steps in the sector and said economic reforms have continued apace and have been supplemented by long-pending reforms in the areas of labour and agriculture through legislation. “The path to reform at the initial stages may cause misapprehensions. However, it is beyond doubt that the Government remains singularly devoted to farmers’ welfare,” the President said.

Kovind said every Indian salutes our farmers, who have made our vast and populous country self-reliant in foodgrains and dairy products. “Despite adversities of nature, numerous other challenges and the Covid-19 pandemic, our farmers sustained the agricultural production. A grateful nation is fully committed to the welfare of our farmers. Just as our hard working farmers ensure food security for the country, the brave soldiers of the armed forces ensure security of our national boundaries amid severest conditions,” he said.

Economic recovery

He said the process of unlocking was carefully calibrated in order to open up the economy without risking the lives of the people. “This has proved effective and the economy has started showing indications of recovery faster than anticipated. The latest unprecedented collection of GST and India’s emergence as a most favoured destination for the foreign investment are indicative of our faster economic recovery. The government has encouraged small and medium industries to unleash entrepreneurial spirit by providing easy loans to them and helped them to come up with innovative business ideas,” he said.

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He hailed the Atmanirbhar Abhiyan and said it converted a crisis into an opportunity.

“Our vibrant democracy, our enterprising and talented fellow citizens — especially the youth — energise our efforts in shaping a self-reliant India. Under this Mission, steps have been taken for economic growth as well as employment generation by promoting MSMEs and making the start-up eco-system more robust. It has become a movement being taken forward by the people themselves,” the President said.

He said Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan is in line with the aspiration to shape a new India by the year 2022. “This will be a significant milestone in the journey of the nation as we are determined to achieve major goals: from providing pucca houses for every family to doubling the income of farmers. In order to build an inclusive society of new India, we are giving special emphasis on education, health, nutrition, upliftment of the under-privileged and welfare of women,” he said.

Education policy

Kovind said the ‘National Education Policy 2020’, with its stress on tradition as well as technology, will lay the foundation of a New India which aspires to emerge as a knowledge hub on the international stage.

“This reform promises to incubate innate talent of students and ignite their minds to take up the challenges of life,” he said.

Published on January 25, 2021

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