New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday urged citizens to take a pledge of freedom from the pandemic on the Independence Day and resolve for a self-reliant India.
Speaking at the 67th edition of his monthly radio programme ‘Mann Ki Baat’, the Prime Minister said that August 15 celebrations will be different during these circumstances due to coronavirus.
“Before we meet in the next Mann Ki Baat, August 15 would have already arrived. This time, our August 15 celebrations too will be in very different circumstances – in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic,” he said.
“I urge the youth, the people of my country to take a pledge of freedom from the pandemic this Independence Day. Take a resolve for a self-reliant India, a resolve to learn and teach something new and a resolve to earnestly carry out our duties,” the Prime Minister said.
The Prime Minister had announced ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ (self-reliant India) initiative in May this year to make India self-reliant and reduce dependence on imports.
ANI had earlier reported that only 20 per cent VVIPs or other participants will be able to witness the live speech of Prime Minister Modi at Red Fort in the national capital this year.
According to sources, there would be a complete change this time. While there would no children, cadets of the National Cadet Corps would attend the celebrations at the Red Fort.Similarly, unlike earlier times, VVIPs wouldn’t be able to sit at the rampart, from where the Prime Minister delivers Independence Day speech.
Close to 900 VVIPs used to sit on the top on both sides earlier. But this time, they will have to sit at the lower level, with only around a hundred allowed.
More significantly, as many as 1,500 Corona winners, who recovered from the disease, will attend the function. Among, them 500 would be from local police. The other 1,000 would be from different parts of the country.
Till last year, at least 10,000 people used to attend the function to witness the speech of the Prime Minister.
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has also issued an advisory for the Independence Day celebrations on August 15 amid the coronavirus pandemic.
It has asked all the government offices, states, Governors etc to avoid congregation of public and urged the use of technology for conducting the celebration proceedings.