Zee Media Bureau
New Delhi: On the day of Indo-China talks, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Sunday evening spelled out the mantra to compete with its neighbouring country, saying that skill, scale and speed is needed to compete with it.
Speaking at a book launch event, from 7, Race Course Road, the official residence of country`s executive head, PM Modi today outlined India`s economic vision and said, “If India has to compete with China, the focus should be on skill, scale and speed.”
After taking oath as the Prime Minister of India, this is the first time that PM Modi had addressed from his official residence after releasing a book `Getting India Back on Track - an action agenda for reform`.
PM cited the three colours of the national flag while speaking on the need to develop key sectors for overall growth of the country.
Beginning with green, he said India needs to bring about a second green revolution focusing on increased agro-productivity, value addition, agro technology, and decentralization of warehousing.
Modi said a white revolution must focus on increasing milk productivity and developing a support system for ensuring cattle health.
"Saffron colour represents energy – and we need a saffron revolution that focuses on renewable energy sources such as solar energy to meet India`s growing energy demand," he added.
Highlighting the necessity of standard education centers in the country, PM said, “Universities have a huge contribution in policy frameworks in developed nations, it will be a strong step if we can do this.”
Adding that the country needs to exploit the demographic dividend as 65 per cent of population was below 35 years of age, he said, "For this skill development needs to be a priority area."
Referring to skills such as teaching, nursing and paramedics, Modi further said good teachers were one of the biggest needs of society, but rued that there were very few good teachers available.
"Can India become an exporter of good teachers who would capture the imagination of an entire generation globally," the Prime Minister asked.
He said, in infrastructure, the focus needs to shift from highways to "i-ways", and optical fibre networks.
"Cities in the past were built on river-banks. They are now built along highways. But in future, they will be built based on availability of optical-fibre networks and next-generation infrastructure," he added.
Referring to the blue colour of Ashoka Chakra, Modi said blue revolution should focus on developing fisheries, including ornamental fish.
He further said that the "input of intellectual think-tanks" should be enhanced for better policy framework.
The Prime Minister added urbanisation should not be treated as a problem, but as an opportunity.
"If we have to generate employment and change for the better, we plan to build 100 smart cities," he said.
PM Modi further stressed on the need for water conservation and emphasised the importance of micro-irrigation, which would lead to "per drop, more crop".
He said that the micro-irrigation had been successful in improving productivity and quality in crops like sugarcane in Gujarat.
Talking about the need to combat the challenge of global warming and climate change, the Prime Minister said that a civilisation that treated rivers as mothers, did not need to learn about environment protection from a western mindset.
Speaking on the occasion, Minister for Finance, Corporate Affairs and Defence, Arun Jaitley said there could not have been a more appropriate time for release of the book.
He said governments should not only have the will to rule, but also the credibility to rule.
"The international community was once again looking at India, and it is an opportunity that we cannot afford to miss," Jaitley said.
Earlier in the day, the entire gamut of bilateral ties including the contentious boundary issue was discussed during a "cordial and substantive" engagement between the foreign ministers of India and China here who met within two weeks of installation of the Narendra Modi-led NDA government.
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj met for three hours today to talk about "perennial" bilateral issues which were not specified by an Indian spokesperson but are believed to have included the boundary dispute, incursions, issuance of stapled visas by China to certain category of Indians, construction of dams on Brahmaputra river and increased Chinese investments.
Dispatched here by Chinese President Xi Jinping as his Special Envoy to meet with India`s new leadership, Wang was effusive in his praise for the new government saying it had injected new vitality into an ancient civilization.
"The international community is closely following developments in India and the Chinese and Indian dreams have a lot of commonalities," the Chinese leader was quoted as speaking by the Spokesperson.
The talks were described as "cordial, useful, productive and substantive" by the MEA Spokesperson, who said, "Even while there was a determination to add new content and substance to the relationship, there was an understanding that respect for the sensitivities and aspirations of each other was an essential for expansion of bilateral relations."
With agency inputs