Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday addressed the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York. In his address, PM Modi took a veiled dig at Pakistan for "using terrorism as a political tool".
"Countries with regressive thinking that are using terrorism as a political tool need to understand that terrorism is an equally big threat for them," PM Modi said.
Speaking about the Afghanistan crisis, PM Modi said it is absolutely essential to ensure that the war-torn country is not used to spread terrorism and for terrorist activities.
He also said that people of Afghanistan, women and children, minorities need help that should be provided to them.
"We also need to ensure that no country tries to take advantage of delicate situation in Afghanistan and use it for its own selfish interests. At this time, people of Afghanistan, women and children, minorities need help. We must fulfill our duties by providing them with help," he said.
Speaking about the coronavirus pandemic, PM Modi said the world has for the past one-and-a-half years is facing the worst pandemic of the past 100 years and paid his tributes to all those who lost their lives in COVID-19.
"For the last-one-and-half years, the world has been grappling with the worst pandemic it has seen in a hundred years. I pay my tributes to all those who have lost their lives in a dangerous pandemic and I express condolences to their families," PM Modi said.
PM Modi added that he represents a country which is proud to be known as the mother of democracy and cited his own rise from a tea seller at a railway station to that as prime minister to underscore the strength of India's democracy.
Addressing the high-level UNGA session, Modi said: "We have had a great tradition of democracy that goes back to thousands of years".
"I represent a country that is proud to be known as the mother of democracy. On 15th of August this year, India entered into the 75th year of its independence," he said.
"Our diversity is the identity of our strong democracy," he said.
It is a country that has dozens of languages, hundreds of dialects, different lifestyles and cuisines. This is the best example of a vibrant democracy, PM Modi said.
"The strength of our democracy is demonstrated by the fact that a little boy who at one time used to help his father at his tea stall at a railway station is today addressing the United Nations General Assembly for the fourth time as prime minister of India," he said.
"I will soon have spent 20 years serving my countrymen as head of government. First, as the longest serving Chief Minister of Gujarat and then as the Prime Minister for the last seven years," Modi said, adding that democracy has delivered.
(With ANI and PTI inputs)
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