Addressing citizens on the occasion of the nation's 67th Independence Day, Dr. Singh, in his 10th Independence Day speech delivered from the ramparts of the historic 17th-century built Red Fort, also said that a scheme for offering minimum support prices for minor forest produce has been approved, and this would help to give tribal communities remunerative prices for the minor forest produce they collect.
He also said that a high level committee has been constituted to collect accurate information about the socio-economic, educational and health status of the tribal population.
He hoped that the committee's report and recommendations would help the government design better schemes for their benefit.
"We can solve many of the problems that our country faces by deploying advanced technology. The Aadhaar scheme is a good example. Under the scheme, by the end of this year, about 50 crore people will acquire the means of proving their identity and this will bring them convenience in their daily lives. It will also enable crores of people to avail of banking facilities for the first time," Dr. Singh said.
He also said that there can be no place for narrow and sectarian ideologies in a modern, progressive and secular country like India.
"Such ideologies divide out society and weaken our democracy. We should prevent them from growing. We need to strengthen those traditions of our country which teach us to promote tolerance and respect for thought processes different from ours. I would appeal to all political parties, all sections of our society and the public at large to work in this direction," the Prime Minister said.
He said that every decade after independence has witnessed major changes in the country, and therefore, there is a need to think what changes the people would like to see in the decade ahead.
"If in the future, we can achieve the same kind of progress as in the last decade, the day is not far off when India will be rid of poverty, hunger, disease and ignorance. Our India will be prosperous and all its citizens will be equal partners in this prosperity, irrespective of their religion, caste, region or language. We will also need to build an environment of political stability, social cohesion and security for this to happen. Let us all re-dedicate ourselves to building such an India together," the Prime Minister concluded.
--ANI (Posted on 15-08-2013)