Lauding the farmers in the 68th edition of Mann ki Baat address to the nation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the farmers have proven their mettle during the trying times of Corona.
“This time around in our country, sowing of kharif crops has increased by seven percent compared to last year. The sowing of paddy has increased by approximately ten percent, pulses close to five percent, coarse cereals almost three percent, oilseeds around 13 percent and cotton nearly 3 percent. For this I extend felicitations to the farmers of our country…I salute their perseverance,” he said.
SEASON OF FESTIVALS
Noting that the period was full of festivals and religious ceremonies, Modi said that the people on the one hand are full of exaltation and enthusiasm and in another way there’s also a discipline that touches the heart during the times of Corona crises.
Onam is increasingly turning out to be an international festival. Onam is a festival linked with our agriculture.
He also mentioned Onam, the festival of Kerala, which falls on August 31. “The festival of Onam is also being celebrated with gaiety and fervour. This festival arrives in the month of Chingam. During this period, people buy something new, decorate their homes, prepare Pookalam and enjoy Onam-Saadiya… variety of games and competitions are also held. The zest of Onam today has reached distant shores of foreign lands. Be it America, Europe or Gulf countries, the verve of Onam can be felt everywhere. Onam is increasingly turning out to be an international festival. Friends, Onam is a festival linked with our agriculture. It is also the time of a new beginning for our rural economy. Our lives, our society derive sustenance from the fortitude of farmers. Their perseverance lends myriad hues to our festivals,” he said.
FESTIVALS AND ENVIRONMENT
Mentioning Ganeshotsav, the Prime Minister said that the festival was being celebrated online at certain places. He also mentioned that there was a connect between the festivals and environment. He also pointed out that the festivals conveyed the message of co-existence with the environment and nature and also most of the festivals are celebrated precisely for protecting nature. “For example, in West Champaran district of Bihar, people belonging to Thaaru tribal community have been observing a sixty-hour lockdown for centuries…..in their own words- ‘Saath ghante ke Barna’. The Thaaru community has adopted BARNA as a tradition for protection of nature; that too for centuries. During this period, neither does anyone enter the village, nor leave home, and they believe that if they step out or if someone enters from elsewhere, the to and fro movement along with other routine activities of people can lead to the destruction of new plants and trees. Our tribal brothers and sisters begin the Barna lockdown with a grand worship and conclude with jestful traditional tribal songs, music and dance programmes,” he said.