Emphasising that democracy could deliver, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said India, despite the many global challenges, was the fastest-growing major economy today which in itself was the best advertisement for democracy in the world.
Talking about the virtues of democracy, he said; Democracy is not just a structure; it is also a spirit. It is based on the belief that the needs and aspirations of every human being are equally important. That is why, in India, our guiding philosophy is “Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas”, meaning ”striving together for inclusive growth”.
Addressing virtually the 2nd Summit for Democracy co-hosted by US President Joe Biden, Modi underlined that democracy could deliver and noted that the idea of elected leaders was a common feature in ancient India, long before the rest of the world.
”In our ancient epic, Mahabharata, the first duty of citizens is described as choosing their own leader. Our sacred Vedas, speak of political power being exercised by broad-based consultative bodies. There are also many historical references to Republic states in ancient India, where the rulers were not hereditary. India is, indeed, the mother of democracy,” he said.
Modi’s remarks came amid the charge by the Opposition parties that democracy was being crushed under the ruling dispensation.
Democracy, the PM said, was not just a structure; it was also a spirit. It was based on the belief that the needs and aspirations of every human being were equally important. ”That is why, in India, our guiding philosophy is “Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas”, meaning ”striving together for inclusive growth,” the PM added.
He pointed out that whether it was India’s effort to fight climate change through lifestyle changes, to conserve water through distributed storage, or provide clean cooking fuel to everyone, every initiative was powered by the collective efforts of the citizens of India.
During Covid-19, India’s response was people-driven. It was the people who made it possible to administer over two billion doses of Made in India vaccines. ”Our ‘Vaccine Maitri’ initiative shared millions of vaccines with the world,” he added. This was also guided by the democratic spirit of ”Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” – One Earth, One Family, One Future.