The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi addressed the Rajya Sabha in the New Parliament Building today.
Addressing the House, the Prime Minister remarked that today’s occasion is historic and memorable. He recalled his address in the Lok Sabha and expressed gratitude towards the Chair for the opportunity to address the Rajya Sabha on this special occasion.
Noting that the Rajya Sabha is considered the Upper House of the Parliament, the Prime Minister underlined the intentions of the makers of the Constitution that the House become a center for serious intellectual discussions rising above the ebb and flow of political discourse while giving a direction to the nation. “It is the natural expectation of the country”, the Prime Minister said as he noted that such contributions to the nation increase the value of the proceedings.
The Prime Minister quoted Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan that the Parliament is not just a legislative body but a deliberative body. Shri Modi said that it is always a pleasure to hear quality debates in Rajya Sabha. New Parliament, he said, is not just a new building but is also a symbol of a new beginning. At the dawn of Amrit Kaal, this new building will infuse a new energy in 140 crore Indians, he said.
The Prime Minister stressed the need to achieve goals in a set time frame as the nation is no longer ready to wait. He said that the time has come to move with new thinking and style to meet the aspirations of the people and that will require expanding the scope of work and thought process.
The Prime Minister said that the House can be a source of inspiration for the legislative bodies all over the country with regard to parliamentary probity.
Throwing light on the decisions taken in the last 9 years, the Prime Minister pointed out those issues that have been pending for decades and were considered monumental. “Touching upon such issues was considered a huge mistake from the political standpoint”, the Prime Minister said as he mentioned that the government took major strides in this direction even though they did not have the required numbers in the Rajya Sabha. He expressed satisfaction that the issues were taken up and resolved for the betterment of the nation and credited the maturity and intellect of the Members for the same. “The dignity of the Rajya Sabha was upheld not because of sheer numbers in the house but due to the dexterity and understanding”, he added. The Prime Minister thanked all the members of the House for this feat.
The Prime Minister said that despite the changes in dispensations in a democratic setup effort has been to keep the national interest supreme.
Underlining Rajya Sabha’s role as House of the States, the Prime Minister said that in the time of emphasis on cooperative federalism, the country has moved forward with great cooperation on many critical matters. He mentioned the Corona pandemic as an example of center-state cooperation.
The Prime Minister said that not only during distress but also in the times of festivities, India has impressed the world. He said that the diversity of this great nation was showcased during G20 events in more than 60 cities and the Summit in Delhi. This is the power of cooperative federalism, he said. He also mentioned that the new building also represents the spirit of federalism as artifacts from states have found a place of prominence in the scheme of the new building.
Highlighting the growing impact of technology in daily life, the Prime Minister mentioned that advancements which took more than 50 years to accomplish can be witnessed within a few weeks now. He stressed the need to mould oneself in a dynamic way to adapt to the growing technological advancements.
The Prime Minister said that in the Samvidhan Sadan, we celebrated 75 years of Independence, when the century of Independence will be celebrated in the New Building in 2047, it will be a celebration in Viksit Bharat. He further said that in the old building, we reached up to 5th spot in terms of the economy of the world. “I am confident that in the New Parliament, we will be part of the top three economies of the world”, he said. He continued, “While we undertook many measures for the welfare of the poor, in the new Parliament we will achieve saturation of coverage of those schemes.”
The Prime Minister emphasized the need to adopt new technologies along with the New Parliament Building as the House is equipped with cutting-edge technology. He also urged the Members to support each other in getting accustomed to the new technology available in the House.
In this Digital Age, the Prime Minister said, we must make technology a part of our lives. Referring to Make in India, the Prime Minister said that the nation is making the most out of this initiative with new energy and enthusiasm.
Mentioning Narishakti Vandan Adhiniyam that was presented in the Lok Sabha, the Prime Minister said that when we talk about the ease of life, the first claim of that ease belongs to women. He said that the participation of women is being ensured in many sectors. “Potential of women should get opportunities. Time of ‘ifs and buts’ in their lives is over”, the Prime Minister said.
He said the Beti Bachao Beti Padhao programme became a people’s programme. He also mentioned women participation in Jan Dhan and Mudra Yojana. He mentioned Ujjwala and elimination of Triple Talaq and stronger laws for women’s safety. He said women-led development was the biggest topic of discussion in G20.
The Prime Minister mentioned that the issue of reservation for women in the Parliament has been pending for decades and everyone has contributed towards it in their capacity. Pointing out that the bill was first introduced in 1996 and numerous deliberations and discussions took place during Atal Ji’s tenure, but the bill could not see the light of day due to the lack of numbers, the Prime Minister expressed confidence that the bill will finally become law and ensure ‘Nari Shakti’ towards nation building with the new energy of the New Building. He informed about the Government’s decision to introduce the Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam as a Constitution Amendment Bill in the Lok Sabha today which will be up for debate tomorrow. The Prime Minister concluded the address by urging the members of the Rajya Sabha to support the bill unanimously so that its power and outreach are amplified to the fullest.