Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday wished the nation on Christmas and said it was a day of service and compassion.
“I wish you all a Merry Christmas. It is the day when people should serve with compassion,” Modi said in his monthly radio addres ‘Mann Ki Baat’.
Modi said Jesus not only did serve the poor but he “has also appreciated the service done by poor, this is real empowerment”.
He thanked people for enduring the “pain” caused by the government’s November 8 decision to spike 500 and 1,000 rupee notes that has caused an unprecedented cash crunch across the country.
“I congratulate people for not only enduring pain but also for giving appropriate answers to those who were trying to mislead them,” Modi said in his monthly radio address to the nation ‘Mann Ki Baat’.
The Prime Minister said people faced hardships and inconvenience but “answered back those who publicly tried to mislead them”.
The move to recall 86 per cent of the total currency in circulation was ostensibly aimed at to curb corruption and black money in the country.
However, it has led to people in large number queuing up to withdraw or deposit cash in overcrowded banks and ATMs.
He also announced lucky draw schemes for people who use digital payment methods including e-banking, mobile banking and e-wallets.
In his monthly radio address to the nation ‘Mann Ki Baat’, Modi on the occasion of Christmas said 15,000 people who use digital payment modes will be given a reward of Rs 1,000 each by a lucky draw. This amount will be transferred to their accounts.
“This scheme will last for 100 days (from Sunday). As such lakhs of people will get crores of rupees,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister said there will be one big draw every week with winning price in lakhs.
“On the occasion of Ambedkar Jayanti April 14 2017 we will be conducting a bumper draw in which the winning price will be in crores.”
PM remembered educationist and freedom fighter Madan Mohan Malviya and former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on their birthdays.
“Malviya gave new directions to the modern education in India. He was a fine example of resolution and self-confidence,” Modi said in his monthly radio address, ‘Mann Ki Baat’.
Greeting Vajpayee on his 92nd birthday, Modi said the former Prime Minister and Bharat Ratna recipient took the nation to “new heights” which will be never forgotten.
The Prime Minister said Vajpayee “strengthened the nation” by modernising and promoting country’s nuclear power.
Modi recalled his days working with Vajpayee and said that in all the posts and responsibilities, the former Prime Minister proved to be an ideal for others.
Modi also paid tributes to Malviya on his 155th birthday.
“Two days back I went to the workplace of Malviyaji and (laid the foundation) of a project at the Banaras Hindu University for Mahamana Madan Mohan Malviya Cancer Institute. This will be a boon not only for western Uttar Pradesh but also for Jharkhand and Bihar,” the Prime Minsiter added.
Modi lauded the country’s sportsmen and sportswoman who have “made us proud”.
Modi praised the Indian cricket team for its performance in a recently concluded Test series against England. “It has been phenomenal this year, congratulate the team for beating England 4-0.”
He also congratulated the junior hockey team of India for winning the hockey World Cup. “After 15 years, our junior hockey team has won the world cup. I congratulate all the young players.”
“Our sportsmen and sportswomen have made us proud,” Modi said in his monthly radio address Mann Ki Baat.