The 76th edition of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s monthly radio address “Mann Ki Baat” comes at a time when the country is facing a deadly sweep of the second wave of coronavirus – believed to more contagious than the previous ones and an election in West Bengal.
States, battling this unprecedented surge in cases, have been flagging an acute shortage of oxygen, beds and medicines for Covid patients as crematoriums are overwhelmed by the large number of fatalities.
The Election Commission, taking note of the health crisis, has banned all rallies and campaigns in Bengal and only allowed meetings to be held with no more than 500 people.
In the March edition of the broadcast, Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke about India’s Covid vaccination programme as the country marked a year of the “Janata Curfew” that was announced on March 23, 2020 to curb the spread of the deadly coronavirus.
As the world celebrated the International Day of Women in March, PM Modi said he is “happy that daughters are creating a niche for themselves in sports and other segments in life.”
Here are the highlights of PM Modi’s Mann Ki Baat:
- My dear countrymen, Namaskar. Today I am talking to you about ‘Mann Ki Baat‘, at a time when Corona is testing our patience; it is testing the limits of all of us at enduring misery
- Many of our near and dear ones have left us untimely. After successfully confronting the first wave of Corona, the country was full of enthusiasm, full of self-confidence, but this storm has shaken the country.
- Friends, to deal with this crisis in the past, I have had a long discussion with experts from different sectors
- Be it the people from our pharma industry, vaccine manufacturers, people involved in the production of oxygen or those with knowledge of the medical field, everyone has given their important suggestions to the government
- At this time, to win this battle, we have to accord priority to expert and scientific advice. The Government of India is fully engaged in taking forward the efforts of the state governments. The state governments are also trying their best to fulfill their responsibilities
- Friends, the country’s doctors and health workers are fighting a huge battle against coronavirus at this time. In the last one year they have had all kinds of experiences about this disease
- Friends, I urge you all to get information from the right source if you want any information or have any apprehensions. Your family doctor, doctors around you, you can contact them by phone. Please consult them
- Many doctors are providing information to people through social media. They are also counseling on the phone, WhatsApp. There are many hospital websites where this information is available, and where you can consult the doctors as well. This is very admirable
- Friends, in this hour of crisis, everyone is understanding the importance of vaccines. So, I urge you to not fall for any rumors about the vaccines
- Now the country’s corporate sector, companies will also play a role in vaccinating their employees
- You must all know by now that the Government of India has sent vaccines to states free of cost to inoculate those above 45. Now from May 1, vaccines will be available for all above the age of 18
- I urge the states to extend the benefit of the Centre’s free vaccine campaign to as many people as possible in their state
- I want to say that the government’s free vaccination drive which is currently underway will continue