Prime Minister's Office English rendering of PM’s interaction with healthcare workers & Covid vaccination beneficiaries in Himachal Pradesh
Prime Minister’s Office
English rendering of PM’s interaction with healthcare workers & Covid vaccination beneficiaries in Himachal Pradesh
Posted On: 06 SEP 2021 1:20PM by PIB Delhi
Himachal Pradesh today has given me an opportunity of pride, not only as a Pradhan Sevak, but also as a family member. I have seen Himachal struggling for small privileges and today I am also seeing Himachal writing the story of development. All this has been made possible with the blessings of the deities, due diligence of the Himachal government and the awareness of the people of Himachal. I once again express my gratitude to all those with whom I got the opportunity to communicate and I also thank the entire team. Himachal has achieved amazing achievements by working as a team. I wish you all the very best!!
Governor of Himachal Pradesh Shri Rajendra Arlekar ji, energetic and popular Chief Minister Shri Jai Ram Thakur ji, our colleague in Parliament and National President of Bharatiya Janata Party and a prodigy of Himachal, Shri Jagat Prakash Nadda ji, my colleague in the Union Cabinet, Shri Anurag Thakur ji, my colleague in Parliament and Himachal BJP President Shri Suresh Kashyap ji, all other ministers, MPs and MLAs, public representatives of panchayats and my dear brothers and sisters of Himachal!
Himachal Pradesh has emerged as a champion in the fight against the biggest pandemic of 100 years, such a period never ever seen in 100 years. Himachal has become the first state in India to have administered at least one dose of corona vaccine to its entire eligible population. Not only this, Himachal has crossed almost one third of the population in the case of second dose also.
This success of the people of Himachal has also boosted the self-confidence of the country and reminded them how important it is to be self-reliant. Free vaccines to everyone and the confidence of 130 crore Indians is the result of self-reliance in vaccines. India is making a record by administering 1.25 crore vaccines in a day. The number of vaccines India is administering in a day is more than the entire population of many countries. The success of India’s vaccination campaign is the result of the culmination of hard work and valor of every Indian. The ‘Sabka Prayas’ that I had mentioned from the Red Fort on the 75th Independence Day is a reflection of that. After Himachal, Sikkim and Dadra Nagar Haveli have crossed the 100% first dose milestone and many states are also very close to it. Now we have to make concerted efforts that those who have taken the first dose must also take the second dose.
Brothers and sisters,
This self-confidence is also the root of Himachal Pradesh’s fastest vaccination campaign. Himachal believed in its own potential, in its health workers and scientists of India. This achievement is the result of the high spirits of all health workers, ASHA workers, Anganwadi workers, teachers and all other colleagues. There is also a lot of hard work by the people associated with the health sector, be it doctors, paramedical staff, or other assistants. In this too, a large number of our sisters have played a special role. Just a while ago, all our colleagues who worked on the ground also explained in detail the kind of challenges they faced. There were all kinds of difficulties in Himachal which proved to be a hindrance in vaccination. Being a hilly region, there is a problem of logistics. The storage and transportation of corona vaccine is even more difficult. But the way Jairam ji’s government developed the systems and handled the situation is really commendable. It is really a big deal the way Himachal has ensured the fastest vaccination, without wasting the vaccine.
In view of the difficult geographical conditions, mass communication and public participation is a huge factor in the success of vaccination. In Himachal, even the dialects completely change after every mountain. Most of the area is rural, where faith is an integral part of life. There is an emotional presence of Gods and Goddesses in life. A little while ago, one of our sisters told us about Malana village in Kullu district. Malana has always played an important role in giving direction and vitality to democracy. The team there organized a special camp, transported the vaccine boxes through span wire and took the important people associated with the Dev Samaj into confidence. Such a strategy of public participation and public dialogue also worked in every inaccessible area like Dodra and Kwar in Shimla, Chhota-Bada Bhangal of Kangra, Kinnaur, Lahaul-Spiti and Pangi-Bharmour.
I am happy that even an inaccessible district like Lahaul-Spiti in Himachal has been at the forefront in administering 100% first dose. This is the region which remained cut off from the rest of the country for months before the Atal Tunnel was built. Himachal has shown it time and again how faith, education and science together can change lives. The people of Himachal did not believe in any rumour or disinformation. Himachal is a testament to how the country’s rural society is empowering the world’s largest and fastest vaccination campaign.
Himachal’s tourism industry, which is a source of employment for a large number of youth, will also benefit from rapid vaccination. But remember, we do not have to forget the mantra of wearing masks and maintaining a distance of two yards despite the vaccination. The people of Himachal know very well how to step out cautiously after the snowfall. You must have also noticed that we tread cautiously after we fold up umbrellas after the rains are over. Similarly, we have to take precautions after the Corona pandemic. During the Corona period, Himachal Pradesh became a favorite destination for ‘Work from Home, Work from Anywhere’ for many youths. Himachal is getting a lot of benefits due to better facilities and better internet connectivity in the cities.
Brothers and sisters,
Himachal Pradesh has experienced the positive impact of connectivity on life and livelihood even in this Corona period. The biggest priority of the country today is connectivity, whether it is road, rail, air, or Internet. Today settlements with 8-10 houses are also being connected with the roads under the Pradhan Mantri Gramin Sadak Yojana. Himachal’s national highways are getting wider. Tourism is also getting the direct benefit of such strong connectivity and so are farmers and gardeners who produce fruits and vegetables. With access to the Internet in villages, young talents of Himachal are able to explore possibilities of tourism and take their culture to the country and abroad.
Brothers and sisters,
Himachal is going to benefit more due to modern and digital technology in the near future. Big changes are going to happen especially in the field of education and health. With this, even remote schools and health centers can virtually connect with teachers in big schools and doctors from big hospitals respectively.
Recently, the country has made another decision, which I especially want to tell the people of Himachal Pradesh. This relates to the change in the rules regarding drone technology. Now its rules have been simplified. As a result, new possibilities will emerge in Himachal in many sectors like health and agriculture. Drones can now also be used in home delivery of medicines, can also be used in gardens and it is already being used in land surveys. I think proper use of drone technology can change the life of the people of our mountainous areas. Drone technology can also be of great use in Himachal for the protection and conservation of forests. It is the constant endeavor of the Central Government that there should be maximum use of modern technology in government services as well.
Brothers and sisters,
Himachal is on the path of rapid development today. But natural calamities are also posing a big challenge to Himachal. We have lost many friends in several unfortunate incidents in the recent past. Therefore, we have to move fast towards scientific solutions and encourage research related to early warning systems on landslides. Moreover, we have to keep motivating our youth for new innovations in the technology related to construction in view of the requirements of the hilly areas.
Jal Jeevan Mission is a great example of how meaningful results can be obtained by connecting villages and communities. Today tap water is available even in those areas of Himachal where it was once considered impossible. The same approach can be adopted for forest wealth as well. In this regard, the participation of our sisters in the self-help groups in the villages can be strengthened. There is a lot of potential in the forests of Himachal especially for herbs, salads and vegetables, whose demand is increasing continuously. Our hardworking sisters can multiply this wealth manifold through scientific methods. Now, our sisters also have access to the new medium of e-commerce. On this 15th August, I have also announced from Red Fort that the Central Government is going to create a special online platform for self-help groups of sisters. Our sisters will be able to sell their products in the country and the world through this medium. The sisters of Himachal will be able to deliver apples, oranges, kinnows, mushrooms, tomatoes and many such products to every nook and corner of the country. The Central Government has also created a special Agri-Infrastructure Fund of Rs 1 lakh crore. The self-help groups of sisters and farmer producer associations can set up cold storage or food processing units near their villages with the help of this fund. As a result, they will not have to depend on others for the storage of their fruits and vegetables. I am sure that the hardworking farmers and gardeners of Himachal will make maximum use of this fund.
I would like to make one more request to the farmers and gardeners of Himachal during the Amrit Mahotsav of independence. Can we make efforts to make Himachal agriculture organic again in the next 25 years? Gradually, we have to free our soil from chemicals. We have to move towards such a future where the soil and the health of our sons and daughters remain robust. I have faith in the potential of Himachal and the youth power of Himachal. Just as the youth of Himachal are in the forefront in protecting the borders, every farmer of our Himachal will play a leading role in protecting the soil in every village in the same way. With the wish that Himachal continues to strengthen its identity of achieving the impossible, many congratulations to all of you once again! Many best wishes to Himachal to be the first in the country to achieve the target of complete vaccination! Today I will again urge all the countrymen to remain alert to Corona. So far, about 70 crore vaccine doses have been administered. Doctors, nurses, Anganwadi-ASHA sisters, local administration, vaccine manufacturing companies and scientists of India across the country have put in their best efforts. There has been a rapid pace of vaccination, but we have to guard against any indifference and carelessness and I have been reiterating a mantra from Day 1 that we must not forget the mantra of ‘Dawai Bhi Kadai Bhi’ (Vaccination as well as strict adherence to protocols). Once again many best wishes to the people of Himachal. Thanks a lot!
DISCLAIMER: This is the approximate translation of PM’s speech. Original speech was delivered in Hindi.
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