New Delhi: Exhorting the NCC cadets to work for the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said that university in diversity is India's strength and his inspiration.
“We are blessed that we are a youthful nation. Our dreams are young, our energy is young. When we participate in a parade, it is not just our steps that meet but our minds too meet,” he said at the National Cadet Corps camp at Army Parade Ground in the national capital.
Referring to NCC cadets' assembly in Delhi for the Republic Day parade, Modi said, “In front of me is a mini India and a mini form of the future of India. As a cadet when we experience living in a group then we experience unity.”
“Unity in diversity - this is the strength of our nation. And this is what keeps inspiring us,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister fondly remembered that he too, was once an NCC cadet, adding that Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj had also served with the NCC.
“Our defence minister, foreign minister and I - all were NCC cadets...I was an NCC cadet but I never got an invite to come to Delhi,” he said, adding that a boy cadet from his school who had come to Delhi for the parade had turned into an instant celebrity in the school.
Speaking on the experience of being in the NCC, PM Modi said that being a cadet helps one understand India better.
To stress the point further, Modi refereed to the countrywide tours that Swami Vivekananda and Mahatma Gandhi undertook during their time to understand the nation.
PM Modi used the event to appeal to the NCC cadets to take a pledge to turn yoga into a mass movement by organising events on Jan 21 – International Yoga Day – to spread awareness of its benefits.
The PM also spoke about the theme of this year's Republic Day Parade 'Stree Shakti' and said more girls should be encouraged to join the NCC.
Modi touched upon the 'Swatchh Bharat' campaign as well and said that efforts must be made to change people's outlook about ensuring cleanliness.