India a "geocultural" nation, culture is binding thread across regions, says Amit Shah

  • | Sunday | 24th April, 2022

Puducherry, Apr 24 (PTI) Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday said culture was the common thread binding the citizens of the country across different regions and once India is started to be seen as a "geocultural" country, all the problems will be solved automatically. In his address at the 150th borth anniversary celebrations of Sri Aurobindo in this union territory, Shah heaped praises on the latter for his contributions to the country and said to understand India, one has to read or listen to him. "From Kashmir to Kanyakumari to Dwaraka to Bengal, there is one culture that binds--Constitution is should run on this. But if there is a bonding, it is the culture. The culture is its soul. This will be understood as soon as you read Sri Aurobindo," he said. Shah further said most countries came into existence due to a coalition or alliance and were therefore geopolitical in nature. "There is one country in the world that is geocultural that is based on culture which has no boundaries and that is our India...and if one starts to look at India as a geocultural country, then all the problems will be automoatcially solved," he claimed. There is no concept of border in our culture and the Vedas, Upanishads and literature there is no mention of a country. "We work for the wlefare of all, the world," he said. Paying rich tributes to Sri Aurobindo, Shah also recalled his role in the country"s freedom struggle, including his incarceration in the Alipore bomb case and hailed his vision for the country. Prime Minister Narendra Modi"s decision to celebrate the 75th year of independence as "Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav" was driven by the consideration to honour even the unknown freedom fighters and take all those involved in the freedom struggle to the younger masses and reinvigorate a sense patriotism among them. It is also an effort to inspiring people to strive towards making India a top country in all aspects between the 75th and 100th years of independence, Shah added. "We may have been born after independence and may not be part of the army and while we could not sacrifice ourself for the country, none can stop us from living for the country. Today during 75th year of independence and 150th birth anniversary of Sri Aurobindo we all should resolve towards achieving this," he said. Shah also recalled Aurobindo"s close association with his native state Gujarat. He further hailed the role of Bal Gangadhar Tilak in the freedom movement thru the Ganesh Chathurthi festival. The minister earlier visited the Aurobindo Ashram and paid homage at the memorials of Aurobindo and his spiritual collaborator, The Mother. "Sri Aurobindo was a great intellectual and spiritual giant. He made lasting contributions to India"s freedom struggle. Sri Aurobindo’s works and thoughts remain relevant for all and he continues to be our guiding light," he said in a tweet. Shah also visited the Mahakavi Bharathiyar Memorial Museum here and the hailed national poet and freedom fighter as the "epitome" of patriotism. "Subramania Bharathi is the epitome of patriotism, unity & social reforms. His patriotic songs motivated countless people to join the Indian freedom movement. His ideas continue to motivate us all," Shah said in a tweet. He paid floral tributes at a portrait of Bharathi at the memorial. Later, at a different event, Shah laid the foundation stone for various government development projects as well as inaugurated the completed ones. These included a Franco-Tamil village at an estimated Rs 45 crore to boost heritage tourism, separate departments for Chemistry, Physics and Food Processing departments in the Pondicherry University, among others. Underlining the Centre"s commitment for the union territory, he listed out the various initiatives for Puducherry and make it a model UT, such as banning single use plastic, ensuring 100 per cent coverage vis-a-vis covid vaccination, Jal Jeevan mission and ensuring bank one account for every household. Puducherry has been declared Open Defecation Free (ODF) and every house has a toilet, Shah said, adding the UT is also kerosene-free with the government taking LPG to every household. He noted that under about 90 projects, six lakh beneficiaries have been disbursed with Rs 500 crore through direct bank transfer (DBT) "without any middlemen." He reiterated Centre"s keenness to make Puducherry BEST--an acronym coined by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to promise to make the UT a Business, Education, Spiritual and Tourism (BEST) hub. Taking a swipe at the previous Congress rule, he said while the talk then centered around corruption, it is now development under the BJP-NR Congress coalition. "Wrong translation" was done to leaders rather than delivering pro-poor measures, he said in an apparent reference to an episode involving former Chief Minister V Narayanasamy and Rahul Gandhi, where the local Congress leader allegedly gave a wrong translation of a woman"s complaint to the national leader. Puducherry Lt Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan and chief minister N Rangasamy among others participated in the two events attended by Shah today. PTI COR SA ROH ROH

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