Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday voiced concern over the declining sex ratio in 100 districts of the country, with situation being “more serious” in Haryana, and pitched for a campaign to save girls through the social media.
In his monthly ‘Mann Ki Baat’ programme on All India Radio, he, however, refrained from speaking on politics or recent controversies surrounding Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje over the Lalit Modi issue which some quarters were expecting.
He talked about the recently-launched three social security schemes and three developmental schemes, including ‘housing for all’ by 2022, as well as the Yoga Day celebrated on June 21.
He also emphasised on the need for saving water and planting trees to preserve the environment.
During his 20-minute programme, Modi mentioned about the ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padao’ (save daughter, educate daughter) scheme launched by the government.
In this context, he mentioned that a Sarpanch of Bibipur village in Haryana Sunil Jaglan had started “selfie with daughter” competition wherein fathers were to post their ‘selfies’ with their daughters.
Appreciating the initiative and pitching for a campaign to save the girl child, Modi asked all fathers to send their ‘selfies’ with their daughters to him, out which he will re tweet the good ones.
“In Haryana, the number of girls is lesser than that of boys. Across the country, there are about 100 districts where the situation is worrisome. In Haryana, the situation is more serious,” the Prime Minister said.
“It gives pleasure that in the same Haryana, a Sarpanch of a small village can give such a dimension to the ‘Beti Bachao’ programme. It raises new hopes. That is why I appreciate this initiative. But it also gives me an inspiration and that is why I urge you to click pictures with your daughters and post those on #selfiewithdaughter,” PM Modi said.
Talking about his initiative for building toilets in all government schools in the country, he recalled that he had made the announcement during his first Independence Day speech last year.
“I had said that we will complete this task by next Independence Day. To say that the work that could not be done in 60 years will be completed in one year requires a lot of courage as almost 4.5 lakh toilets had to be built. But today I can say with satisfaction that, while the Independence Day is still some time away, the work to construct toilets in all schools has almost been completed, although the task is not finished yet,” he said.
The Prime Minister also referred to the three social security schemes launched recently, which included Atal Pension Yojana and an insurance scheme for the poor.
“In India, very little work has been done in terms of social security but through these three schemes, we are taking a big jump,” he said.
To take the initiative forward, he suggested that on the upcoming Raksha Bandhan, boys should “gift” these policies to their sisters and even their maids and labourers.
Keeping in mind the monsoon season, the Prime Minister insisted the people to conserve rain water. “Every drop of water is valuable. For the country, for our society, we will have to make it a practice to conserve every drop of water. We must try to ensure that the village water remains in the village, the city water remains in the city. If we save rain water, it helps us throughout the year,” he said.
PM Modi also asked the countrymen to be proud of their history and culture and propagate it as the world is eager to know more about India.
In this context, he referred to the Yoga Day celebrated across the world on June 21, with even UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon participating in it at the UN Headquarters. He also mentioned how it was celebrated in all the developed and developing countries to demonstrate that “sun never sets on yoga”.
“My dear countrymen, you have made me the Prime Minister but a human being in me sometimes gets lost in you all, leaving aside the post I am holding. The Yoga Day on June 21 got me involved in the same way,” he said.