The Indian High Commissioner, Rajesh Ranjan, says his countrymen have a responsibility to vote in the general election of the 17th Lok Sabha.
Addressing the Indian community in Botswana, Ranjan spoke on behalf of their President Shri Ram Nath Kovind, on the commemoration of the 70th Republic Day of India recently. The High Commissioner said as they do every five years, voters would deliver their verdict and write their destiny. He explained that elections were not just a political exercise but that an election is a collective call to wisdom and to action.
“It represents a renewal and a recommitment to the goals and hopes of a shared and egalitarian society. It represents the diverse and yet singular urges of the people and the Republic of India. This makes the very act of voting a sacred one. Please perform this act. Who the voter chooses to vote for is up to him or her, I would only request all eligible voters to go out and vote. Our country is at a key juncture. In some respects this is as critical and formative a period as the late 1940s and early 1950s. Decisions and actions of today will shape the India of the remainder of the 21st century. As such, this is not just a once-in-a-generation moment, it is a once-in-a-century moment,” he emphasised.
He reminded them that those elections were a milestone in the journey towards fulfilling the aspirations of their people and building a developed India. He said India was at the doorstep of eliminating extreme poverty for the first time in memory. Ranjan added that a programme of universal and equitable healthcare has begun. He also said that affordable medicines and medical devices and implants were becoming a reality
The high commissioner also told the gathering that in the form of ports and inland waterways, upgraded railways and new metro services, national highways and rural roads, cost-effective air services to the interiors of India, and of course the surge in mobile phones and data access, his country made progress as it brought them together as never before.
He said leapfrogging technologies and leapfrogging enlightenment were empowering their farmers and equipping their soldiers. He explained that they were enabling their traditionally deprived fellow citizens and educating their daughters and sons.
“They are exciting the entrepreneurial energies and the infectious start-up culture that has made our younger generation and our India the focus of world attention and admiration. This is more so in the perception of senior generations that have lived through and strived to overcome the shortage economy. In area after area, commodity after commodity, we have converted difficulty into availability. We have done this step-by-step and year-by-year. And yet whether in food grains or LPG cylinders, telephone connections or even the ability to get a passport, change is apparent and change is visible. In many cases, technology has been a force multiplier. And in all cases, inclusiveness has been a moral multiplier.”
“Our Republic’s vision is that of reaching democratic goals by democratic means, pluralistic goals by pluralistic means, enlightened goals by enlightened means, inclusive goals by inclusive means, compassionate goals by compassionate means and constitutional goals by constitutional means,” he said.