Addressing the nation through his monthly radio programme Mann Ki Baat, Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke about how the new farm bills, the subject of nationwide protest by farmers and opposition parties, would benefit the farmers and help create a self-reliant India.
In the 68th edition of Mann Ki Baat, PM Modi said the country’s agricultural sector’s strength and resilience during the coronavirus pandemic was a reflection of its farmers, the “foundation of Atma Nirbhar Bharat”.
Farmers are playing a major role in the efforts to build an Aatmanirbhar Bharat. If they are strong the country will be strong, he said.
Tweeting “Empowering India’s hardworking farmers”, the Prime Minister said the country’s farmers are now free to sell their produce to anyone, anywhere, and not just to the government through the now-revoked agricultural produce market committees, or APMCs.
“This is their strength, and this is the basis of their progress. They can now sell anything they grow in their fields, not just fruits and vegetables, but wheat, rice, sugarcane, to whoever gives them the highest price,” PM Modi said.
He also spoke about India‘s rich tradition of storytelling and its importance amid the coronavirus pandemic. PM Modi interacted with storytellers from across the country who are keeping its regional folk tales alive, and are using it as a medium for education among children and healing among senior citizens.
“The world is going through great change during the coronavirus pandemic, and maintaining social distance has become important, stories are a great way to keep our families connected. As a family, set aside some time for storytelling. This will be a wonderful experience. The same way, highlight stories relating to the great women and men who have made India proud,” the Prime Minister said.
In his earlier address on August 30, the Prime Minister had said that the month of September would be observed as “Nutrition Month”. He had also given the call to team up for toys, aimed at making India a hub for toy production.
Mann Ki Baat is held on the last Sunday of every month.