"Light A Lamp For Soldiers": PM's Dussehra Greeting On "Mann Ki Baat"

PM Modi addressed the nation in the 70th edition of his Mann ki Baat programme today.

New Delhi:

India stands firmly with country's brave soldiers and security forces, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said today as he urged people to light a lamp for soldiers while celebrating festivals amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Addressing the nation through his monthly radio programme ''Mann Ki Baat'', the Prime Minister began by extending his wishes on Dussehra. PM Modi said "the soldiers are serving the nation away from their family as they guard the country's borders to ensure that the people in the country are safe from external threats".

"Lots of festivals like Eid, Diwali will take place at this time of the year. During these festivals, we also have to remember our brave soldiers who have also stood at the borders. We have to light a lamp at home, in honour of these brave sons and daughters of Mother India," PM Modi said in his monthly radio address.

PM Modi's comments come at a time when India is locked in a standoff with China. The army has significantly strengthened its troops and weaponry along the nearly 3,500 km-long border with China, including Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh sectors, given that tension in Ladakh has shown no sign of easing. The standoff continues despite several rounds of high-level talks, taking Indo-China ties to a new low.

He urged people to celebrate festivals with restraint and to remember the resolve of ''vocal for local'' while shopping.

"Today is the festival of Vijay Dashmi - Dussehra. I extend my best wishes to all of you on this auspicious occasion. This festival of Dussehra is the festival of victory of truth over untruth. But at the same, it is also a festival of victory of patience over crises. Today, all of you are living with great restraint, celebrating festivals with modesty. Therefore, in the battle, we are fighting (against COVID-19), victory is certain," Prime Minister said.

"Previously, a large number of people used to gather in Durga Pandal for darshan of Goddess Durga. It was affair like atmosphere. But this time it did not happen. Earlier, big fairs were also held on Dussehra. But this time their form is also changed. Thre festival of Ramleela was also a big attraction, but there are some restrictions for it also. This time all large gatherings are banned. There will be Eid, Sharad Purnima, Valmiki Jayanti, Dhantesras, Diwali, Chhatth Pooja, Guru Nanak Dev Jayanti festival in coming days. During this corona crisis, we have to work with restraints," he added.

"Mann ki Baat'' is aired on All India Radio on the last Sunday of every month through which the Prime Minister interacts with the nation.