Leading the 73rd Republic Day celebrations in Kerala, Governor Arif Mohammed Khan on Wednesday said as the largest democracy in the world, India's voyage has been steered by modern ideas of governance, the urge to ensure equality and justice and firm resolve to defend against all forms of aggression.
Despite the pandemic spread, the nation has displayed tremendous resilience and capability, scope of synergy and leadership in every sphere and our spirit of patriotism and pride in our march towards the pinnacle of prosperity and power are boundless, he said.
In his customary address after hoisting the National Flag and inspecting the ceremonial parade at the Central Stadium here, Khan also wished that the actions of citizens be sincere expression of deep commitment to uphold the constitutional values, to ensure the welfare of fellow-beings by creating equal opportunities for all and to enable the nation to attain greater levels of self reliance and progress.
"As the largest democracy in the world, our voyage has been steered by modern ideas of governance, the urge to ensure equality and justice and firm resolve to defend ourselves against all forms of aggression," he said. "As citizens of the largest and the most vibrant democracy, we have a duty to preserve and carry forward our cultural heritage of harmony, rooted in the divinity of mankind," he said.
Lauding the achievements of the nation and the state of Kerala in various spheres, the Governor urged everyone to remember on the occasion the contributions of the nation builders and pay homage to the martyrs who laid down their lives while guarding our freedom and sovereignty.
"Overall, we have administered over 160 crore vaccinations as part of the largest vaccination drive in the world. India has also approved two more vaccines and an anti-viral drug, as part of combating Covid 19... The successful test of the new generation nuclear-capable ballistic missile ‘Agni Prime’, the ongoing sea trials of our Indigenous Aircraft Carrier INS Vikrant, and the induction of the new generation fighter aircraft, have added strength to our defence capabilities," he said.
Khan said the country is now at the threshold of the 'Amrit Kaal', a period of holistic development declared by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, marking 75 years of our independence. "Our centenary dreams include a new India with modern infrastructure through the Gati Shakti Master-plan, a nation with better and more transparent governance and an energy independent India through the National Hydrogen Mission," he said.
Hailing the state government, the Governor said the state has achieved tremendous progress in the development of infrastructure and connectivity by commissioning Highways, Waterways and Gas pipeline links. He noted that the state government's decision to establish special courts to try cases related to dowry harassment and violence against women is an expression of firm resolve to ensure gender justice by wiping out evil practices like dowry.
"I am sure that by building a strong network of educational and research institutions of greater quality in Kerala, we can help realize the national dream of transforming India as the world’s knowledge hub, as envisaged in the National Educational Policy. On this Republic Day, let our thoughts be on making our beloved State of Kerala a paradise of intellectual pursuits and the preferred destination for higher education and research in India," Khan added.
People's representatives and senior government officials took part in the event held at the Central Stadium here adhering to strict COVID protocols. Various state ministers took part in Republic Day celebrations in district headquarters.
With inputs from PTI.