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PM Modi gives clarion call for water conservation

Prime Minister Narendra Modi today called upon people to start a mass movement for water conservation and resolve to save every drop of water amidst water scarcity in several parts of the country.

He said an awareness campaign should be started which should not only focus on water-related problems but also propagate ways to save water.

Mr Modi was addressing the nation through Mann Ki Baat programme on All India Radio for the first time after resuming office for the second term. He said, society must be united in this endeavour and people belonging to social and cultural organizations should lead this movement in their own fashion.

Prime Minister Modi also requested the people to share traditional methods that have been in use over the centuries for the conservation of water. He asked the people to pay a visit to  Porbandar to see a 200-year-old water tank which is still capable of storing water and has a mechanism to harvest rainwater.

Mr Modi also requested the people to share the information concerning people who are making significant contributions towards water conservation. He urged people to use #JanShakti4JalShakti to share their content on the matter.

Listing the initiatives taken by the people for water conservation in many parts of the country, the Prime Minister said there cannot be a single formula for dealing with water crisis throughout the country.

He said, water scarcity affects many parts of the country every year and it is surprising that only eight per cent of rainwater is harvested.

Keeping the importance of water in mind, Mr Modi added that a new Jal Shakti ministry has been created in the country to allow faster decision-making on all subjects related to water.

He said he wrote letters to all the Sarpanchs and Gram Pradhans asking them to convene a meeting of the Gram Sabhas and discuss the solution to water problem with the villagers.

Saying that water is of great importance in Indian culture, Prime Minister quoted Rigveda’s Apah Suktam.

Talking about International Day of Yoga which was celebrated recently, Mr Modi said awareness about Holistic Health Care has enhanced the glory of Yoga.

He highlighted that Yoga has assumed such an iconic form that over the Himalayas, across the Indian Ocean, from air-force to aircraft carriers, from air-conditioned gyms to hot desert and from villages to cities – yoga was not just practised but also celebrated collectively.  

He stressed that healthy and sensitive denizens are required to build a healthy society and Yoga ensures this very principle. Mr. Modi said, promotion of Yoga is a great example of social service. He cited examples where Yoga training is being imparted in Japan, Italy and many other countries.

Highlighting the importance of democracy, the Prime Minister stated that in order to ensure smooth conduct of the social order, a constitution is required. He added that India can proudly proclaim that beyond laws and rules, democracy is embedded in its culture and a part of its heritage.

He said during Emergency, there was an outrage in the conscience of all and the collective torment on the loss of democracy was evident. Mr Modi said people must keep reminding themselves that the country’s democracy is gloriously great. He said the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections witnessed 61 crore voters exercising their franchise.

This figure is more than the entire population of America and exceeds the entire population of Europe. Prime Minister underlined that this stands for the sheer size and spread of India’s democracy. He also highlighted the resources and manpower involved in the mammoth exercise.

Urging the people to choose books over flowers in welcome or felicitation ceremonies, the Prime Minister mentioned about the stories written by famous Hindi writer Premchand and said their messages are still relevant. He said his stories like Eidgah, Pus Ki Raat, Nasha, show images of the stark social realities that exist and are expressions of human emotions through a simple and lucid language.

Mr Modi also mentioned Akshara Library in Kerala which lies in a village nestled within the dense forests of Idukki.  A Primary school teacher, P.K.Muralidharan and P.V.Chinnathampi who runs a small tea shop, work tirelessly for this library which is a beacon guiding tribal children on a new path. He urged people to make reading a part of the daily routine.

The Prime Minister also said that he missed sharing his thoughts with the people on Mann Ki Baat. He expressed his delight at being able to resume the programme saying that in a family like atmosphere, these plain, simple reflections become the reason for the change in life and society.

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