Delivering his second address to the nation as President, on the eve of the 69th Republic Day, Kovind said, "This is the new stage of our nation-building project on which we have embarked. This is the Republic that our young people need to take forward and enhance."
Urging citizens to always draw inspiration from "both our republican values as well as from our ancient Indian ethos", and rededicate themselves to improving the country by removing existing societal aberrations, President Kovind said, "We have achieved a lot as a nation, but much remains to be done. We need to work on this in the spirit of the generation that gave us our Republic."
Stating that India as a Republic would turn 70 in 2020 and 75 as an independent nation in 2022, he said, "We must strive in the manner of the leaders of our national movement and the framers of our Constitution to build the edifice of a better India, an India where each and every citizen will be able to realise his or her full potential, an India that will reach its deserved pedestal in the 21st century."
"We need to continue to modernise and strengthen our strategic manufacturing sector so as to provide the valiant personnel of our armed forces, and our police and paramilitary forces, the equipment that they need. We need to move ahead rapidly on the Sustainable Development Goals - Goals that commit us to eliminating poverty and hunger, to universal access to quality education and healthcare, and to giving our daughters equal opportunity in every field," he added.
President Kovind further said, "We need to make clean, green, efficient and affordable energy reach our people. We need to ensure that housing for all becomes a living reality for the millions of families who await their own home. We need to craft a modern India that is both a land of talent - and a land of unlimited opportunities for that talent."
Mentioning the plight of the less privileged and weaker communities of Indian society that still live at the edge of poverty, he said, "It is our sacred obligation to eliminate the curse of poverty in the shortest possible time. This is non-negotiable for the Republic." (ANI)