Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday addressed to the nation on the 53rd episode of his monthly radio-broadcast Mann Ki Baat. It was the prime minister's first radio address since the Pulwama terror attack on February 14, which had claimed the lives of more than 40 CRPF jawans. Nearly 40,000 Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers from the Kangra-Chamba parliamentary constituency in Himachal Pradesh will be listening to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's radio address 'Mann ki Baat', the party had said on Friday.
The prime minister suspended his monthly 'Mann ki Baat' broadcast for March and April and said he will be back with the programme on the last Sunday of May, by when results of the Lok Sabha elections are expected to be declared.
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In this monthly address through the radio broadcast -- the 53rd since Modi came to power in 2014 -- he said he was doing so keeping in mind healthy democratic traditions.
"Elections are the biggest celebration of democracy. In the next two months, we will be busy in the hurly-burly of the general elections. I myself will also be a candidate. Respecting healthy democratic traditions, the next episode of 'Mann Ki Baat' will be broadcast on the last Sunday (May 26) of May," Modi said.
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Opposition parties have in the past demanded stopping the broadcast of Mann ki Baat during elections, saying it violated the model code of conduct as the interaction amounted to the misuse of the prime minister's programme for political purposes.
Sounding confident of his return to power, he said he will begin the series of conversations under the programme from May with the "power of your blessings" and will keep speaking to people through 'Mann ki Baat' for years.
At the beginning of his address, Prime Minister Modi remembered those martyred in the Pulwama terror attack.
"The families of the Pulwama attack martyrs are an inspiration for all of us," Modi said.
Lauding our security forces for killing the Pulwama attack mastermind, the prime minister said our armed forces have always shown unparalleled courage.
"On one hand, they have displayed impeccable capabilities in restoring peace; on other, they have retaliated befittingly in the language terrorists understand," Modi said.
The prime minister also informed the nation about the new memorial that has been instituted in the heart of Delhi, in close vicinity of India Gate and Amar Jawan Jyoti.
"The National Soldiers’ Memorial is a symbol of the nation’s gratitude to those men who made the supreme sacrifice after we gained Independence: PM Narendra Modi," Prime Minister Modi said.