New Delhi, Jan 31: President Droupadi Murmu Wednesday said that the doubts regarding the removal of Article 370 were history now.
Addressing the joint sitting of both houses of the parliament, she said, “There were doubts regarding the removal of Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir. Those are now history.”
The President highlighted the achievements and various initiatives taken by the Centre during the last 10 years for the development of the tourism sector, pilgrimage destinations, and historical sites across the country.
“Tourism is a big sector employing the youth. In the last 10 years, my government has done unprecedented work in the field of tourism. Along with the number of domestic tourists in India, the number of foreign tourists coming to India has also increased,” she said. “The reason for the growth in the tourism sector is owed to India’s growing stature. Today the world wants to explore and know India. Apart from this, the scope of tourism has also increased due to excellent connectivity.
Building airports at various places is also advantageous. Now, North East is witnessing record tourist arrivals. Now there is heightened excitement about Andaman-
Nicobar and Lakshadweep islands.”
President Murmu said that the government has emphasised the development of pilgrimage destinations and historical sites across the country.
“This has now made the pilgrimage in India easier. At the same time, there is a growing interest in the world towards heritage tourism in India. In the last year, 8.5 crores of people have visited Kashi. More than 5 crores of people have visited Mahakaal. More than 19 lakh people have visited Kedar Dham. In the 5 days of “Pran Pratishtha” 13 lakh devotees have visited Ayodhya Dham itself. There is unprecedented expansion of facilities at pilgrimage sites in every part of India, East-West-North-South,” she said.
The President said, “The government also wants to make India a leading destination for meetings and exhibitions related sectors. For this, facilities like Bharat Mandapam, and Yashobhoomi have been created. Shortly, tourism will become a major source of employment.”
In her first address in the new Parliament building, she said that the building of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya had been a dream for centuries and it was a reality now.
“This Parliament also enacted a strict law against ‘Triple Talaq’ and also a law to grant citizenship to persecuted minorities from our neighbouring countries,” President Murmu said.
“My government also implemented One Rank One Pension, the appointment of Chief of Defence Staff,” she said.
The President said that according to NITI Aayog, in the last decade, about 25 crore countrymen had been lifted out of poverty.
“We have seen India transform from fragile five to a top five economy,” she said.
President Murmu said that India’s exports had increased from about 450 billion dollars to more than 775 billion dollars.
“FDI flows have doubled. The number of people filing Income Tax returns has increased from about 3.25 crores to about 8.25 crores. start-ups in the country have grown to more than one lakh today. In December 2017, 98 lakh people used to pay GST, today their number is 1 crore 40 lakh,” she said. “Around 13 crore vehicles were sold in the 10 years before 2014. In the last 10 years, countrymen have purchased more than 21 crore vehicles. About 2,000 electric vehicles were sold in 2014-15, whereas,
till December for the year 2023-24, about 12 lakh electric vehicles have been sold.”
The President said that in 10 years, Capex had increased 5 times to Rs 10 lakh crore.
“The fiscal deficit is also under control. Today, we have forex reserves over $600 billion. The NPAs of banks which used to be in the double digits in the past are
today around only 4 percent. Today, India is the world’s second-largest producer of mobile phones. Today India is exporting Made in India toys. India is maintaining a growth rate of over 7.5 percent for two consecutive quarters,” she said. “India became the first country to hoist its flag on the southern pole of the moon. India
successfully launched the Aditya Mission and its satellite reached a distance of 15 lakh km away from the earth. The success of the historic G-20 Summit strengthened India’s global standing.”
President Murmu said that India won more than 100 medals for the first time in the Asian Games.
“We also won more than 100 medals in the Para Asian Games. India got its largest sea bridge, the Atal Setu. India got its first Namo Bharat train and the first Amrit Bharat train. It became the country with the fastest 5G rollout in the world,” she said/
The President said, “I appreciate all of you for having enacted the Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam after a wait of three decades. This has paved the way for ensuring greater participation of women in the Lok Sabha and the Legislative Assemblies. The nation has got a new Nyaya Sanhita based on the principle of ‘Justice First.’”
She said that the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation Act would ensure the right to representation to tribals there.
“India’s defence production has crossed Rs 1 lakh crore. The country has the indigenous aircraft carrier INS Vikrant, and combat aircraft Tejas, manufacturing of C-295 transport aircraft is going to take place in India. Defence corridors are being developed in Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. The space sector has been opened for young start-ups,” President Murmu said.