PM Modi Set To Deliver His Sixth Straight Independence Day Speech Tomorrow
This will also be the Prime Minister’s first Independence Day address after coming to power again after the Lok Sabha elections.
Former Prime Minister from BJP, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, had also given six straight Independence Day speeches between 1998-2003.
Modi has used August 15 addresses to announce his government's showpiece programmes like 'Swachh Bharat', 'Ayushman Bharat' and India's first manned space mission, and to present a report card on its performance to highlight how the country has grown on his watch.
Some BJP leaders noted that an element of surprise has often marked the prime minister's addresses and this Independence Day speech may not be different.
The BJP's remarkable win in the recent general election followed by its success in getting Parliament's nod to its contentious but core agenda of revoking Jammu and Kashmir's special status under Article 370, has already set the tempo of his speech, party leaders believe.
In his address to the nation last week, he had assured people of the Valley development and peace, as he sought to assuage concerns following his government's decision to scrap the state's special status and dividing it into two Union Territories.
The situation in Kashmir remains far from normal amid a security clampdown and communication restrictions.
With a dispirited opposition unable to pose any serious challenge to the BJP's hegemony and Modi's return to power with a majority even bigger than his landslide win in 2014, many believe he may use the occasion to announce reforms or make concessions to different sections of the society.
There is also a view that Modi may seek to address concerns over the economic slowdown.
He has often invoked India's rich cultural and spiritual traditions to rally people's support for some of his pet projects from cleanliness to ending female foeticide, but this time it may be the turn of water conservation, an issue he has prioritised in his second term.
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