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Rajiv’s single term as PM will be remembered for far-reaching achievements: Congress

Rajiv annivesary

New Delhi, August 20: The Congress on Saturday paid rich tributes to former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi on his birth anniversary, saying his single term as PM will be remembered for far-reaching achievements, including deepening the foundations of the IT revolution that has transformed India.
Former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi and party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra visited their father’s memorial, Veer Bhumi, and paid homage on his 78th birth anniversary in the morning.
“Papa, you are always with me, in my heart. I will always try to fulfil the dream that you saw for the country,” Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet in Hindi.
He also shared a video and picture montage on Rajiv Gandhi.
In a Facebook post in Hindi, Priyanka Gandhi said, “My father Shri Rajiv Gandhi had laid the roadmap for 21st century India before the country. An India in which the power of the youth, the power of villages, the potential of women, the use of new technologies, finds expression.”
Steps like information revolution, communication revolution, Panchayati Raj, right to vote at 18 years were steps to strengthen this expression, she added.
“My father’s dream was to take India to the top rank in the 21st century. He worked day and night about that dream and gave a new direction to India,” Priyanka Gandhi said.
“Our path is definitely full of challenges. But, today on the birth anniversary of Shri Rajiv Gandhi ji, we all have to reiterate our resolve to fulfil the dream of taking India to the highest level,” she said.
On Twitter, Priyanka Gandhi posted a montage of pictures and videos of Rajiv Gandhi and also a quote by the former PM “I dream of India Strong, Independent, Self-Reliant and in the front rank of the nations of the world, in the service of mankind.”
In a statement, Congress general secretary in-charge communications Jairam Ramesh said his single term as prime minister will be remembered for numerous landmarks and far-reaching achievements of which six stand out for his personal drive, commitment and leadership.
First, he deepened the foundations of the IT revolution that has transformed India, Ramesh said, adding that Gandhi ushered the country into the computer, telecom and software development era.
“He launched technology missions for addressing societal challenges that have, for example, made India a world-leader in vaccine production and made the country polio-free,” Ramesh said.
“Second, he led the way personally in ensuring that Panchayats and Nagarpalikas were accorded Constitutional status with one-third reservation for women and emerged as effective institutions of self-government,” the Congress general secretary said.
The fact that there are now 14 lakh women elected to such institutions is a tribute to his determination, Ramesh added.
He also pointed out that Rajiv Gandhi crafted accords that brought peace and development back to troubled regions of the country like Assam, Punjab, Mizoram and Darjeeling.
“Fourth, he ensured that 18-year olds have the right to vote, opened a new future to youth by establishing the network of Navodaya Vidyalayas in all districts and had Swami Vivekananda’s birthday declared as National Youth Day,” he said.
The fifth major contribution of the former prime minister, Ramesh said, was that he launched ‘Project Clean Ganga’ and the national wasteland development programme, and was responsible for a comprehensive law to protect the environment.
“Simultaneously, the process of liberalization was initiated which paved the way for the 1991 economic reforms that were anchored in the Congress manifesto that bore his imprint,” he said.
“Sixth, he took significant initiatives to resolve our long-standing issues with China & Pakistan and submitted to the UN an action plan for universal and complete nuclear disarmament,” Ramesh said.
The Indian National Congress salutes this brave son of India and rededicates itself to the ideals he stood for, the principles he upheld, the values he cherished and the causes he championed, he said.
The Congress, on its official Twitter handle, fondly remembered the former prime minister and hailed him as the “architect of 21st century India”.
“It was through his farsighted vision that ushered in the IT & telecom revolution in India. Today, we celebrate his legacy,” the party said in a tweet.
Several Congress leaders, including Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel and party’s general secretary, K C Venugopal also paid tributes to Rajiv Gandhi on his birth anniversary.
In a message on the occasion released by the Chhattisgarh government, Rahul Gandhi appreciated Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel for working tirelessly in the direction of realising the vision of an inclusive society
Rahul Gandhi said schemes like Rajiv Gandhi Kisan Nyay Yojana, Godhan Nyay Yojana, Narva Garhwa Durva Bhari Yojana reflect Chhattisgarh’s commitment to social justice and welfare.
“I am glad to know that on the birth anniversary of Rajiv ji, another installment is being released to more than 26 lakh farmers under the Rajiv Gandhi Kisan Nyay Yojana. The scheme lives up to his vision of transforming our villages through efficient transfer of resources to our rural areas,” Rahul Gandhi said.
India’s youngest prime minister, Rajiv Gandhi was in office during 1984-89. He was assassinated by a LTTE suicide bomber in 1991. (PTI)

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