Greetings Indians around the world with a special mention of the members of Indian armed forces, paramilitary forces and internal security forces, President Pranab Mukherjee in his address to nation on the eve of Independence this year, said, “Freedom is a celebration; independence is a challenge. In the 68th year of freedom, we have reaffirmed the power of our individual and collective liberties by electing through a remarkably peaceful electoral process, a stable government with a clear majority for a single party, after three decades.”
He stressed the need for taking up the challenge of governance by reforming the policies, practices and systems of governance so that the enormous aspirations of our people can be fulfilled with vision, commitment, integrity, speed and administrative capability.
President also congratulated all those sportspersons, who have participated and won laurels in the recently-concluded Commonwealth Games held at Glasgow.
Calling freedom is a celebration and independence is a challenge, he urged for social harmony by placing nation above partisan impulses. He said, “A country of our size, heterogeneity and complexity calls for culture-specific governance models. It calls for cooperation in the exercise of power and assumption of responsibility, by all stakeholders. It calls for constructive partnership between the state and the citizen. It calls for taking a responsive administration to the door step of every hut and habitation in the land.”
“Good governance is critically dependent on rule of law, participatory decision-making, transparency, responsiveness, accountability, equity and inclusiveness. It calls for wider involvement of the civil society in the political process. It calls for deeper engagement of the youth with the institutions of democracy. It calls for quick dispensation of justice to the people. It calls for ethical and responsible behaviour from the media,” he added.
Mukherjee also emphasized the urgency of ending the curse of poverty by making a shift from alleviation of poverty to elimination of poverty and allowing the benefits from economic development must percolate down to the poorest of the poor.
He ended his address by saying with the vision to win the battle of freedom from poverty set; we must get into action to gain success. “As an old saying goes, ‘Sidhir Bhavati Karmaja’, which means, ‘success is born of action’,” he concluded.