The Vice President, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu today called upon the students to rise above the divisions of caste, creed, religion etc. and imbibe the virtues of ‘Sharing and Caring’ in line with the Bharatiya Philosophy of ‘Vasudhaiva kutumbakam’. He also advised them to treat fellow human beings with respect and compassion.
The Vice President, made these remarks while interacting with the children from several government and private schools from all across National Capital Region, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and other neighbouring states who had travelled to Delhi to take part in the Children’s day celebrations held at the Upa-Rashtrapati Bhawan today.
Talking about Pandit Nehru’s fondness for children, Shri Naidu said that Nehru Ji always desired for children to have joyful and fulfilling childhoods.
Asking the students to take inspiration from the lives of our great freedom fighters, he urged them to become true nationalists by keeping the interests of the nation above everything else.
Shri Naidu opined that our education system must mould ideal and responsible citizens, who are socially conscientious with a national outlook. He told the children that they were the future of the nation and asked them to inculcate Indian values and understand and respect India’s great heritage, culture and traditions.
The Vice President also called for making sports a compulsory part of education, especially in Primary and Upper Primary levels and said that playing sports not only ensures good health but also inculcates team spirit and sportsmanship.
He also emphasized the need to teach children Yoga and encouraged them to take part in voluntary activities such as NSS, NCC and Scouts and Guides, etc.
Asking children to spend time in the lap of nature, the Vice President asked them to be active partners in protecting and preserving the environment. He told them to be active partners in national missions such as Swachh Bharath, Fit India and work towards eradicating the single use plastics.
“Nature, culture together for better future”, he said and also asked children to always respectfully remember Mother, Mother tongue, Motherland and Janma Bhumi (birthplace) and Guru.
The Vice President said that women’s education and empowerment was a pre-condition to the nation’s development. Describing women’s education as a priority mission, he said that no compromises can be made when it comes to providing the women of the country equal opportunities for growth. They should get an equal platform to contribute to the progress of the nation, he added.
Earlier in the day, the Vice President interacted with students and office bearers of the ‘Pardada Pardadi Educational Society’ (PPES). Shri Naidu applauded PPES for the invaluable service they are rendering to women's education and empowerment in Bulandshahar district of Uttar Pradesh.
He said that it was truly heartening to note that the Society, in addition to facilitating education for young women from underprivileged backgrounds, was also imparting essential life skills and financial assistance to them, thus securing a promising future to these bright young women.
The Vice President especially appreciated the founder of PPES, Shri Virender (Sam) Singh who retired as the CEO of Dupont, South Asia, for his yeoman service to humanity. He expressed hopes that in times to come, ‘Pardada Pardadi Educational Society’ would spread its wings to bring more and more young women into its fold, guiding them in their overall development and securing the country's future.
On the occasion, the Vice President offered floral tributes to Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru along with his wife Smt. M. Usha and the grandchildren. He also told the students that India is surging ahead on the path to rapid, inclusive and sustainable development. Wishing the children a very bright future, he asked them to make the best possible use of the endless opportunities available to them.
Following is the full text of the speech –
“Today, on the birth anniversary of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of independent India, we celebrate children’s day, as a tribute to ‘Chacha Nehru’s fondness for children.
Nehru loved children and always stood for their education. He always desired for children to have joyful and fulfilling childhoods.
He is perhaps the leader who inspired children, or the ‘future citizens’ as he called them, the most, in India.
He was a visionary. His vision of India was fired by educational institutions, steel plants and powered by dams.
He set up temples of modern learning and giant public sector industries that catered to the needs of a growing nation and its people.
His efforts to create a scientific temper can be seen from his zeal to establish centres of higher learning.
Pandit Nehru and the other iconic leaders who fought for our freedom envisaged a resurgent India. They saw India as Bharat Mata and true nationalism as the collective well-being of entire population.
As Pandit Nehru wrote in ‘Discovery of India’, “the mountains and the rivers of India, and the forests and the broad fields, which give us food, were all dear to us, but what counted ultimately were the people of India, people like them and me, who were spread out all over this vast land”.
To these leaders, Bharat Mata or Mother India, was essentially these millions of people, and victory to her meant victory to these people.
As we pay homage to these great leaders, we must remember that each of them had the same passion for service, for the welfare of people. For them, public administration was an instrument for achieving this larger objective.
India is today a vibrant democracy, an industrial powerhouse, a knowledge partner, a globally respected military power and a technology and space innovator. We have achieved this stature today because of the strong foundations laid by many leaders like Pandit Nehru. You must learn about the lives of these great men and women and draw inspiration from their life and work.
Our education system must mould ideal and responsible citizens, who are socially conscientious with a national outlook. It is thus essential for youngsters to know about India’s cultural heritage, traditions, history, the role of national icons and freedom fighters and also the contributions of social reformers.
You are the future of this nation. It is important for you to inculcate Indian values, understand our great heritage, culture and traditions of our country.
You must also learn to treat fellow human beings with respect and compassion.
You must become true nationalists, in the sense that you must learn to put the interests of the nation above everything else and take care of fellow humans. You should raise above the caste, creed, religious and other divisive differences and imbibe the virtues of “Sharing and Caring” in line with our Bharatheeya Philosophy of “Share and Care” and become sincere citizens of this great nation.
Always embrace all the opportunities that come your way and become constant learners. Learning is a continuous process.
There is also a need to make sports a compulsory part of education, especially in Primary and Upper Primary levels as playing sports not only ensures good health but also inculcates team spirit and sportsmanship. Fit India Mission will only be achieved if children like you own up and Keep yourself healthy and also constantly remind your families and friends about the importance of healthy India.
I also would like to emphasize the need to teach children Yoga and encourage them to take part in voluntary activities such as NSS, NCC and Scouts and Guides, etc.
Dear children, spend time in the lap of nature. Visit eco-parks, wildlife sanctuaries, National Parks and many other places. Protecting nature ensures the wellbeing of all living beings. You should be active partners in protecting and preserving the environment. You need to enthusiastically participate in tree plantation and Swachh Bharath activities, serve as active ambassadors for mission of clean and green India. Love and Live with the nature. Nature, culture together for better future. Children must also always be made to remember Mother, Mother tongue, Motherland and Janma Bhumi and Guru.
Nature, culture, Mother, Mother land, Mother Tongue are all important. Let us not forget our mother tongue. Do everything to promote, protect and propagate.
I would urge all of you to stop using single-use plastic as it is harmful to the environment. The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has given a call to people to stop using single-use plastics from October 2. All of you must take a pledge to take part in that program and encourage others to do the same.
The best way to become a lifelong learner is to keep on travelling. You must visit various tourist destinations in the country to get acquainted with various facets of India’s culture, heritage, languages and cuisine and enhance your understanding of India’s unique cultural mosaic.
My dear children,
You live in a nation that is surging ahead on the path to rapid, inclusive and sustainable development. You have a very bright future ahead of you. I hope that you will make the best possible use of the endless opportunities available to you and become the best version of yourself that you can be.
I am a great believer in the power of youth to transform the nation.
I am confident that each one of you will become model citizens of the world and make this country proud.