In his 70th edition of Mann Ki Baat, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday urged people to remember soldiers, and go 'Vocal for Local' while celebrating festivals.
Addressing the nation in his monthly radio program, Modi began by greeting people on the occasion of Vijayadashami and asked citizens to light a lamp in remembrance of the brave soldiers and security forces who are protecting the nation from external threats amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Lots of festivals like Eid, Diwali will take place at this time of the year. During these festivals, we also have to remember our brave soldiers who have also stood at the borders. We have to light a lamp at home, in honour of these brave sons and daughters of Mother India," PM Modi said in his monthly radio address.
The Prime Minister also urged people to keep the celebration of festivities low key in view of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, and buy festival products from local artisans and stores and promote 'Vocal For Local' drive.
Modi further highlighted the traditional sport Mallakhamb that has recently gained huge popularity in many countries, including the US, and praised two citizens Chinmay & Pragya Patankar, who started teaching the sport at home.
On October 10, Modi asked people for suggestions of topics to be taken during the next session of Mann Ki Baat and share inspiring journeys of citizens. He shared the story of Pon Mariappan from Thoothukudi, Tamil Nadu, who converted his small portion of his salon into a library.
Due to poverty, Pon Mariappan was unable to continue studies after 8th grade. But his passion for reading did not let it overpower. He started the business of saloon, and also started keeping books to keep his hobby alive and with the intention of insisting everyone to develop the habit of reading. His salon has a collection of over 800 books, and he also provides a 30 per cent discount to customers who read the book and provide feedback.
PM Modi also applauded Jharkhand women's self-help group, who take vegetables and fruits from the farmers' fields and deliver them directly to homes. They have built an app called 'Livelihood farm fresh' through which people could easily ask for vegetables.
Through this whole effort, farmers got good prices for their vegetables and fruits, and people also got fresh vegetables.