Modi lauds maturity of Indian voters  


Both Rahul Gandhi and Arvind Kejriwal received admiration from Pakistani politician Fawad Chaudhry this month, apparently for their diatribe against Modi dispensation…reports Asian Lite News

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday expressed shock and surprise over Pakistani voices of endorsement and praise for a select few Indian counterparts (Rahul Gandhi and Arvind Kejriwal) in the middle of Lok Sabha elections and asserted that Indian voters are mature enough to see through their gimmicks.

Modi said that India’s voters are mature in their thoughts and can’t be influenced by any external factor. On questions of Pakistani politicians’ support to Congress leader and AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal amid polls, Modi said: “I don’t understand why some select group of people, apparently those who harbour animosity against us, get endorsements from Pakistan, why voices of support emanate from there, for certain individuals.”

He further said that India is a mature democracy and boasts of rich and well-established electoral principles and traditions and such ‘provocation’ was a matter of grave concern and calls for a thorough investigation.

Notably, both Rahul Gandhi and Arvind Kejriwal received admiration from Pakistani politician Fawad Chaudhry this month, apparently for their diatribe against Modi dispensation.

On May 1, Fawad Chaudhry, erstwhile minister in ex-Pakistan PM Imran Khan-led cabinet wrote on X, “Rahul on fire” while tagging his video, where the Wayanad MP was criticising the BJP, particularly targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

This drew sharp reactions from BJP. The party called it an obvious case of ‘Congress dalliance with Pakistan’.

On May 25, the same Pakistani politician posted a message for Arvind Kejriwal, while replying to his X post and wrote: “May peace and harmony defeat forces of hate and extremism. #MorePower#IndiaElections2024.”

This, however, drew sharp condemnation from the AAP chief himself, who came down heavily on him and said that India will not tolerate interference from the biggest sponsors of terrorism in its internal matters.

‘UPI helped India fight pandemic’

The Unified Payments Interface (UPI) facility played a significant role in India’s fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, even as several prosperous countries faced problems, Modi said.

Many countries could not ensure the provision of money to their citizens due to the lack of a UPI-like service, which India had during those distressed times.

“If there was no UPI, can someone tell me how we would have fought the battle of Covid? Even the rich countries could not provide money to their people despite having sufficient funds. We gave it easily to the needy,” Modi said.

“Today, we can send money to 11 crore farmers within 30 seconds. Now, UPI is user-friendly because of talented youth who create such world-class products that any common person can use,” he said.

Modi also noted that internet data was made cheap in India during the Covid-induced lockdowns in the country in 2020 and 2021, which helped children and the youth bring about a change in their lives. He said that during the pandemic, he was worried about the life of “his now first-time voters, who were 14-15 years old at the time of Covid”.

“So we made data very cheap. I was worried that if they remain stuck within the four walls of their homes, it will lead to the end of their childhood,” the Prime Minister said.

The logic behind making data cheaper, said PM Modi, was that “I wanted them to use the Internet and look at a new world, and it happened. We have benefited from it”.

According to data from the Department of Telecommunications (DoT), the cost of internet data in 2020 was reduced to Rs 10.55 per GB, enabling affordable internet access for millions of citizens. The inexpensive data has also helped the country create world-class solutions for the world, according to the Prime Minister.

These measures helped “India play a huge role in turning the problems of Covid into an opportunity”, he said.

‘I understand young India’s aspirations fully’

Having already given a clarion call to the first-time voters to exercise their franchise in large numbers during the ongoing Lok Sabha elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Monday that he understands the aspirations of the country’s youth and considers it as a responsibility to provide them with a launching pad so that they can achieve their desired goals.

“I understand their aspirations. Today’s youth is very different from the past. They don’t want to conform to the previous standards. They want to make a big leap in every field to reach their intended destinations, even if it means bypassing some steps. Our responsibility is to provide them launching pads, give them a platform to fulfil their aspirations. There is a need to understand youth and their thinking pattern,” said PM Modi in an exclusive interview with the IANS.

While campaigning in various parts of the country over the past many weeks, Prime Minister Modi has been urging the first-time voters to exercise their voting right in record numbers, insisting that the 18th Lok Sabha will also be a “symbol of youth aspiration”.

PM Modi-led government had launched ‘mera pehla vote desh ke liye’ (my first vote for the country) campaign to ensure universal enlightened participation of the youth in elections.

PM Modi has also been getting an insight into the minds of the young generation of India through interactive initiatives like ‘Pariksha Pe Charcha’ and ‘Mann Ki Baat’ monthly programme.

Labelling the millions of questions that are posed to him by youngsters as nothing but a “treasure trove”, he insists that the interactions give him an opportunity to analyse what the young minds of the country think.

“When I do Pariksha Pe Charcha, I get to interact with thousands of students. I come across many students who are thinking decades ahead of their time. A major gap will emerge if the government and the leadership fail to understand aspirations of this new generation,” said the Prime Minister.

Stating that his government turned the Covid pandemic crisis into an opportunity, PM Modi said that he completely understands the true potential of technology and how it can be harnessed effectively.

“During Covid period, I was worried about the country’s young generation. I was worried about their youthfulness confined to the four walls of the room. In my video conferencing sessions, I tried to energise them with certain tasks in order to lift their spirits. That is why we made data very cheap. My logic behind the move was to turn them towards the new digital world, and we succeeded in it,” Modi said.

He added that the digital revolution that is being witnessed right now is a result of India successfully managing to turn around the huge Covid crisis into an opportunity.

“The digital and Fintech revolution in the country owes much to the government’s focus on converting the crisis into an opportunity during that time. I fully understand the prowess of technology and the impactful changes that it can bring for generations and therefore want to harness it to full potential,” said PM Modi.

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