“The nature of global relations has changed after World War-II. There is a possibility of a new world order post corona. The world has seen and appreciated India’s efforts during corona,” said the PM in his Independence Day speech.
“Today the world is looking at India from a new perspective. There are two important aspects of this perception — one is terrorism and the other is expansionism. India is fighting both these challenges and is also responding strongly in a restrained manner. Our defence preparedness has to be equally strong if India has to fulfil its obligations properly,” he added.
The country has also delivered the message of the “might of New India” to its enemies by carrying out the cross-border “surgical strikes” in 2016 and the Balakot air strikes in 2019 against Pakistan, the latter in response to the Pulwama terror attack. “It shows India is changing. India can change. India can take the toughest decisions and it does not hesitate and stop in taking even the toughest decisions,” said Modi.
Citing the examples of the recent maiden sea trials of the first indigenous aircraft carrier, to be named INS Vikrant, and the home-grown Tejas light combat aircraft, the PM stressed his government’s total commitment to strengthening the operational capabilities of the armed forces as well as boosting self-reliance in defence production.
He also referred to the government decision, announced by the defence ministry in 2019, to open the 33 Sainik Schools in the country for girls from this session onwards. “I used to get lakhs of messages from our daughters that they want to study in the Sainik Schools. We did a pilot project in the Sainik School of Mizoram two-two and half years ago by giving admission to our daughters. Now the government has decided that all the Sainik Schools will be open for the girls,” he said.
The Union government, incidentally, now plans to set up around 100 more Sainik Schools across the country in partnership with NGOs, private schools and desirous state governments to add to the 33 already existing ones, as reported by TOI earlier.