Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday, joined dignitaries of Ramakrishna Math, Coimbatore, and the Sant Samaj to mark the 125th anniversary of Swami Vivekananda's iconic speech at Chicago on September 11, 1893, through video conferencing.
Speaking on the occasion, Narendra Modi called himself 'fortunate' to be present at the celebration of the 125th anniversary of Swami Vivekananda's address. PM Modi also drew parallels between the 4000 people present at the Math to the 4000 people present at the World Congress of Religion in Chicago. While praising the Math for taking up competitions in schools and colleges to spread the word of Swamiji, PM Modi said, "The celebration of the speech shows the impact of Swamiji's address."
The Prime Minister also said, " Our young people will debate on important issues and try to find solutions to issues that confront India today," while lauding the spirit of people's participation and their determination to confront issues.
The PM also called the youth assembled at the Math as 'the real strength of India' and lauded their energy and enthusiasm. He also reiterated Swami Vivekananda's views that "the future of India depends on the youth."
"Quoting from the Veda, Swamiji said, 'it is the young, the strong and the healthy of sharp intellect that will reach the Lord'. Today's youth are marching ahead with a sense of mission. Due to the importance of skills development for government created a dedicated ministry for skill development," said PM Modi.
The Prime Minister also said that Swami Vivekananda had changed the thought process of India and that 'we have a lot to learn from Swami Vivekananda'.
While addressing the crowd, he said, "This celebration shows the impact of Swamiji's address and how Indian thoughts and philosophy found its rightful place. I may be far away from you, but I can still feel a unique energy. I have been told that you will not limit this day to just speeches; there are number of initiatives that the Math has taken up."
During the speech, PM Narendra Modi said, "The philosophy of “Ek Bharat, Sreshtha Bharat” is the essence of Swamiji’s address." He said that Swami Vivekananda had awakened the people of the country and built the self-confidence of India's citizens. He also assured that India is heading towards self-confidence and that there is nothing that we cannot achieve.
He also quoted Swami Vivekananda as saying that Chicago Parliament was a tremendous success for India and Indians.
"Our country was under the shackles of foreign rule, we were poor, our society looked down upon and there are many social evils. Swamiji challenged this mindset. He took on the task of clear the dust accumulated on the knowledge of Indian culture. He introduced to the world, the grandeur of the Vedic philosophy in Chicago, but also reminded the country of vast and immense potential. He not only left a mark on the world but also gave new energy, new confidence to the Freedom Movement of the country. He brought back self-confidence. His mantra was 'Believe in yourself, love your country," said PM Modi
"India was involved in harnessing the power of modern technologies when it launched 100 satellites and when the world saw the launch of Mangalyaan and Gaganyaan. The impact of our achievements is seen is seen in the confidence of our young people n daughters. The Asian Games proved no matter how poor you are, what kind of family you come from; confidence and hard work can help you reach heights," he added.
Shifting the focus to the emergence of startups, he said, "Business persons, labourers, accelerating industry production, entrepreneur scientist like you take our country to the new revolution of startups.
The PM also added that the government under the Mudra scheme had provided loans to the needy to encourage self- employment. He also quoted the usefulness of the Startup India Campaign because of which 8000 startups received recognition certificates in 2018. He also announced the launch of 5000 Atal tinkering labs across the country.
"Equality could be achieved in society only when the poorest of poor are at par with ones sitting at the top and the government is working in this direction. The government was bringing the banks to the people through Jan Dhan accounts. Also, the government was providing housing, gas and electricity and life and health insurance. The government will also launch Ayushman Bharat scheme on the 25th of this month," said PM Modi.
Swami Vivekananda had delivered an iconic speech in Chicago in 1893 amid scholars, historians, and religious intellectuals.