Manila: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday asked Indians to work hard to ensure that the 21st century belongs to India.
He also said that his government was making every effort to transform the country and take it to new heights.
Addressing the Indian diaspora in the Philippines capital, PM Modi added that difficulties might be there but once it's crossed no one can stop India from achieving new heights.
"Our efforts are aimed at transforming India and ensuring everything in our nation matches global standards," he said.
At the same time, PM Modi spoke of the long shared heritage and emotional bonding that India has with the ASEAN region in his nearly 35-minute speech.
In particular, he mentioned the Buddha and the Ramayana and said that the Indian diaspora in the region has a key role to play in nurturing this heritage.
I thank the Indian community in the Philippines for the warmth. Interacted with the diaspora during the community programme in Manila. Sharing my speech on the occasion. https://t.co/vdbSQlJKss pic.twitter.com/CftYOHCRTX
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) November 13, 2017
Further, PM Modi spoke of the sacrifice of one and a half lakh Indian soldiers, who laid down their lives in distant lands during World Wars 1 and 2.
He lauded his government's initiatives such as 'Swachh Bharat', 'Jan Dhan Yojna' and 'Ujjwala Yojana'.
"Which Indian doesn't want cleanliness? We have started from where Mahatma Gandhi left and till now over 2.25 lakh villages in India have become open defecation free," the Prime Minister said.
He also attacked the Opposition and said that before 2014 people used to ask how much money has gone to scams but now they ask how much has come.
PM Modi arrived in Manila on Sunday on a three-day visit to attend the ASEAN-India and the East Asia summits.
(With inputs from PTI and narendramodi.in)