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Ambassador’s Remarks on the occasion of Rashtriya Ekta Diwas (31 October 2023)

Posted on: October 31, 2023 | Back | Print

Ambassador’s Remarks on the occasion of
Rashtriya Ekta Diwas
(31 October 2023)

Quaestor and Chairperson of India-Madagascar Friendship Group in the National Assembly H.E. Mrs. Lanto Rakotomanga,
Honorable Members of National Assembly,
Members of Indian Community,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Namaste, Good Morning and warm greetings on the occasion of 148th birth anniversary of the first ever Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister of India Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel, also known as the “Iron Man of India”. His birth anniversary is being celebrated as “Rashtriya Ekta Diwas” (National Unity Day) since 2014. Today is also the culmination of the “Meri Maati Mera Desh” (My Soil, My Country) to commemorate 75 years of India’s independence and pay tributes to the heroes of India’s fight for independence.

2.     Sardar Patel fought not only for India’s freedom but also for the integration of more than 560 princely states into the independent India. He also pioneered the creation of  modern “All India Services” for effective administration of the country in the spirit of service to the nation. As a tribute to his services to the nation, Sardar Patel was awarded “Bharat Ratna” (Gem of India) posthumously  in 1991. In 2014, the Government of India  decided to observe his birth anniversary as ‘Rashtriya Ekta Diwas’ (National Unity Day) every year in order to reaffirm the inherent strength and resilience of India to withstand the threats to its unity, integrity and security. In memory of Sardar Patel, the world’s tallest statue  ‘Statue of Unity’ in Kevadia (Gujarat) was unveiled in 2018. To realize the dreams of Sardar Patel, India, under the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has set itself an ambitious goal to become a developed country by 2047, i.e the 100th anniversary of India’s independence.

3.  Today, even as the post-pandemic world faces an exceptional turmoil with sluggish economic recovery and threats of climate change, terrorism, armed conflicts etc,  India is championing the concerns of the countries of the Global South. This a reflection of India’s ancient philosophy of “Vasudhiva Kutumbakam” (The whole earth is one family), which is also the theme of our ongoing presidency in G-20. In conclusion, I would like to assure that as a close neighbour and a fellow developing country in the Indian Ocean Region, India desires to see the emergence of Madagascar as a thriving nation and stands ready to share to its developmental expertise and experience, as per the needs and requirements of Madagascar. Once again, warm greetings to you all on the occasion of the 148th birth anniversary of Sardar Patel. Thank you!