Introspect on sex crimes, stop insensitive quips, says Narendra Modi

New Delhi, 11 June-2014, HT: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday pulled up politicians who have been making insensitive and outrageous remarks over sex crimes in the country and asked them to “stop psychoanalysing” these incidents.

“Government will have to act tought to tackle rapes and incident like Pune (where a Muslim techie was murdered by rightwing Hindu men)…we must instrospect…at least leaders should stop psychoanalysing the sex crimes, can’t we remain silent, is it necessary to make statements every time a rape happens?” Modi told Parliament

Introspect on sex crimes, stop insensitive quips, says Narendra Modi

Introspect on sex crimes, stop insensitive quips, says Narendra Modi

“Women’s security should be the priority of 1.25 crore Indians,” he said.

Modi, who has been criticised by his opponents for favouring corporates, made a strong pitch for uplift of the poor, while saying it was not enough to rest on the tag of being the largest democracy in the world.

“Is government only for the educated and the rich…the government is for the poor too. The rich can educate their children anywhere in the world; can treat their children in any medical facility,” he said.

“But the poor only have government schools and hospitals. If the government does not work in this direction, the poor will not forgive us,” the PM said.

He said the government “should ensure that by 2022 (75th anniversary of India’s freedom), every family should have a house with water supply, electricity and toilets”.

Long accused of his antipathy towards Muslims, who according to a government-sponsored panel’s report are among the poorest in the country, Modi said, “When I was young, a Muslim man used to repair cycles. Today his son is doing the same job. Why is this? We need to focus on their development.”

“If any organ in the body is not functioning properly, the body can’t be called healthy.

We should ensure that all organs of society are healthy and strong,” said Modi, often accused of being divisive.

He said the government schemes should empower the poor to come out of poverty on their own and hitherto “we have not been able to do much beyond trumpeting that we are a country of villages”.

The reason, he said, was that so many agriculture universities in the country have not been able to utilise the research in transformation of agriculture.

He underscored the need for the “lab-to-land” initiative to increase agricultural productivity, giving examples of Sikkim which is on way to becoming the organic farming powerhouse and Gujarat, where ‘soil health cards’ have helped farmers choose crops appropriate for the soil type.

Pledging that every poor household will have meals twice a day, the PM said the vast stocks of food grains that go waste can be provided to the poor if real time data of agri products is maintained.

“The faster we bring about synergy between technology and farming the faster we will grow. The land is shrinking. For example, we have not been able to develop pulses, we have not been able to increase protein content in pulses,” he said.

In a veiled jibe at the UPA rule for a string of corruption scandals, Modi said the world perceives the country as “scam India” and this government’s priority should be to change it to “skilled India”.

Modi was responding to the discussions and criticisms on President Pranab Mukherjee’s speech, which he said was sacrosanct and would inspire the new government to work.

“For us, the President’s speech is not a mere tradition or a ritual… We will give serious thought to roadmap laid out before us and we should try to accomplish what is required of us.”

“We were just candidates during the Lok Sabha elections. Now (in the House), we are the carriers of expectations of the people of India,” the PM added.

Laying out the agenda of the new government, Mukherjee had addressed on Monday a joint session of Parliament, touching upon issues ranging from inflation to job creation and relations with others countries to women’s security.

“We (Parliament) should work together. The issues that we all raised in the first session depicted hope. The citizens chose the lawmakers with hope and that showed in Parliament on both sides (government and opposition),” Modi said.

The PM also stressed on the need to establish India as a world power. “Isn’t it the need of the hour that we present the strength of our democracy worldwide? He asked. It is our responsibility to show the world what we are capable of,” he said.

The priorities of the new government spelt out in President Mukherjee’s address had the stamp of Modi, who has laid thrust on use of technology to bring quick results, revive Brand India and use social media for participative governance.

“The President appreciated the election process in his speech. I thank the people that they have gone for a stable government. They have ensured a stable five-journey of development,” Modi said in Parliament.

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