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‘Respect critics a lot, unfortunately they are few in number’: Narendra Modi opens up on Opposition, farm laws in new interview

From his political success to the coronavirus vaccination drive in India to his attitude to critics and the farmers protest, no topic was taboo when Prime Minister Narendra Modi stand down for an interview with Open magazine.

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‘Respect critics a lot, unfortunately they are few in number’: Narendra Modi opens up on Opposition, farm laws in new interview

The prime minister also said that the real meaning of ‘intellectual dishonesty’ could be seen in those opposing the farm legislation and said that every decision he took was taken keeping the poorest or weakest person in mind

‘Our success in vaccination is thanks to India being Atmanirbhar.’

‘Our Government has worked tirelessly for the small farmers.’

‘My innermost instinct has always been to do something for others. Wherever I am, whatever I am doing, there is a desire to do something or the other for people.’

From his political success to the coronavirus vaccination drive in India to his attitude to critics and the farmers protest, no topic was taboo when Prime Minister Narendra Modi stand down for an interview with Open magazine.

In the interview, he discusses his style of governance to him being considered a risk-taker.

Here are excerpts from the interview published in Open Magazine.

Vaccination drive in India

Speaking on India’s “stunning success in vaccinating its people”, the Prime Minister credits it to the country being atmanirbhar or self-reliant.

“Imagine if our country had not come up with a vaccine. What would be the situation? We know that a large population of the world doesn’t have access to Covid vaccines. Today, our success in vaccination is thanks to India being atmanirbhar,” PM Modi said in the interview to Open magazine.

As per Friday’s numbers, India’s COVID-19 vaccination coverage has exceeded 89.74 crore.

On the planning, he said: “We started planning for the vaccination drive right in May 2020 when no vaccine was even close to approval anywhere in the world. We had decided as early as then that we did not want this vaccination drive to be run in the old way where it could take decades to vaccinate people. We wanted to run this in a fast, efficient, discretion-free and timebound manner.”

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He said that if we compared India to other countries, ‘we have done better than many developed countries’.

He said that his government focused on technology being the backbone of the vaccination process. Elaborating on this, Modi added that experience showed that it is the poor who get the maximum benefit of technology.

“The poor today does not have to wait or pay a bribe to avail services he deserves,” Modi said.

“A poor migrant,” added Prime Minister Modi, “can take his second dose of vaccine in the city he works in, even if he took the first dose in his village. Technology ensures he gets the right vaccine at the right time and seamlessly, the Prime Minister said.

On the criticism against the banging of thalis and lighting diyas, Modi said there was a need to boost the morale of healthcare and frontline workers. He said the event turned into a big mass movement.

Farmers protest

Commenting on the farmers’ protests that have been taking place in India for months, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that one can see the real meaning of “intellectual dishonesty and rajneetik dhokhadhadi” in those who have opposed the farm laws brought about by his government.

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In the interview, Prime Minister Modi says, “These were the same people who wrote letters to chief ministers asking them to do the exact same thing that our Government has done. These were the same people who wrote in their manifesto that they would enact the same reforms that we have brought. Yet, just because some other political party, blessed by the will of the people, is enacting the same reforms, they have made a complete U-turn and in a brazen display of intellectual dishonesty, completely disregard what will benefit the farmers and only seek what they think will benefit them politically.”

He added that his government committed to empowering the small farmers in every way.

He said that the Centre was ready together and discuss any disagreements and despite many meetings being held, no one till now could come up with a specific point of disagreement that they wanted to change.

Criticism

In the interview, Prime Minister Modi also spoke of the criticism he faced.

He said that he attached big importance to criticism and respected critics a lot. However, the number of critics were few, and that “people only levelled allegations”.

“I, with an honest mind, respect critics a lot. But, unfortunately, the number of critics is very low. Mostly, people only level allegations, the people who play games about perception are more in number. And the reason for this is that, for criticism, one has to do a lot of hard work, research and, in today’s fast-paced world, may be people don’t have time. So sometimes, I miss critics,” he added.

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He says, “It does not mean that Modi has no faults or there is no point on which Modi can be criticised.”

Style of governance

The prime minister said that the earlier governments had only one model — ones that are run to build the next government.

“My fundamental thinking is different. I believe we have to run the government to build the nation (desh banane ke liye sarkar chalani hai),” the prime minister said.

He says that he makes decisions based on Gandhiji’s talisman that sees how my decisions will benefit or harm the poorest or weakest person.

He adds, “While taking decisions, I stop even if the slightest of vested interests is visible to me. The decision should be pure and authentic and if the decision passes through all these tests, then I firmly move forward to implement such a decision.”

Inputs from agencies

(This article including the featured image is an unedited and auto-generated story from Syndicated News feed, Ajanta News Staff may not have modified or edited the content body)

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