People Rejected Outdated Govt in 2014: Modi

Says India's emphasis on becoming a leader in 6G tech

New Delhi: Taking on the Opposition, particularly the Congress, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday termed the 2014 elections the year of “change” when people rejected “outdated phones with frozen screens” to bring in a government that transformed the nation.

Speaking after inaugurating the seventh edition of the India Mobile Congress at Bharat Mandapam in the national capital, the Prime Minister said, “We believe in the power of democratisation in every sector.”

Pointing out that India moved from the 5G rollout stage to the 5G reach-out stage, Modi said, “India is not only expanding the 5G network in the country but also laying emphasis on becoming a leader in 6G technology.”

The Prime Minister spoke about the scam that took place during 2G telecom spectrum allocation during the UPA government, and said that the 4G rollout under the present government’s tenure was free from blemishes. He also expressed confidence that India will take the lead with 6G technology.

Taking a swipe at the previous Congress-led UPA government, the Prime Minister pointed out the outdated methods of the previous governments by drawing an analogy to a frozen mobile device where the commands did not function.

In that sense, the Prime Minister said, "2014 is not just a date. It is 'badlav' (change)."

“After 2014, people stopped using outdated technologies where changing batteries or restarting the system became a futile exercise,” he said, adding, "The same was true for the government of that time... The Indian economy and the then government were in perpetual hang or frozen mode."

"In 2014, people gave up such outdated phones and gave us an opportunity to serve the country," Mr Modi said.

The Prime Minister recalled that India used to be an importer of mobile phones, whereas today, India has become the second-largest mobile manufacturer in the world.

Noting the lack of vision when it came to electronics manufacturing during previous governments, the Prime Minister informed the audience that India today is exporting about Rs 2-lakh crores worth of electronics manufactured in the country.

Stressing on the need to take this success in mobile and electronics manufacturing even further, the Prime Minister said, “For the success of both hardware and software in the tech ecosystem, it is important that we build a strong semiconductor manufacturing sector in India.”

“Today, semiconductor companies around the world are investing in semiconductor assembly and testing facilities in collaboration with Indian companies. India's semiconductor mission is moving forward with the vision of meeting not only its domestic demand but also the needs of the world,” Modi said.

The Prime Minister emphasised that India’s startup ecosystem has made a significant place for itself in the world in the last few years. “India has made a century of unicorns in fairly little time and has now become one of the top three startup ecosystems in the world. Before 2014, India was home to only a few hundred startups, whereas that number has gone up to approximately 1 lakh today,” he said.

The Prime Minister noted that, beyond ranking and number, improvements in internet connectivity and speed led to enhanced ease of living. He talked about the benefits of improved connectivity and speed in education, medicine, tourism and agriculture.

“We believe in the power of democratisation. The benefit of development should reach every section and region. Everyone should benefit from the resources in India, everyone should have a life of dignity and the benefits of technology should reach everyone. We are working rapidly in this direction. For me, this is the biggest social justice,” Modi said.

The Prime Minister mentioned that collateral-free loans under the Mudra scheme, access to toilets and DBT through JAM trinity have one thing in common -- they are ensuring previously inaccessible rights for common citizens.

Highlighting the primacy of technology in the factors that will make a developing nation developed, the Prime Minister said that in the development of digital technology, India is behind no developed nation.

Listing the initiatives to link different sectors with technology, the Prime Minister mentioned platforms like PM Gatishakti in logistics, the National Health Mission in health and Agri Stack in the agriculture sector. He also mentioned huge investments in scientific research, quantum missions and national research foundation and the promotion of indigenous designs and technology development.

Noting that self-reliance in the entire manufacturing value chain is extremely important for cyber security, the Prime Minister underlined that it becomes easier to maintain security when everything in the value chain belongs to the national domain, be it hardware, software or connectivity.

Modi stressed the need to carry out discussions at the India Mobile Congress (IMC) about keeping the world's democratic societies safe. During the programme, the Prime Minister awarded 100 '5G Use Case Labs' to educational institutions across the country.

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