Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday addressed a rally at Aishbagh Ram Leela ground in Lucknow, where he highlighted the challenges posed by terrorism to the world. Modi became the first Prime Minister to attend a Ramlila
event outside Delhi and his participation at the Aishbagh celebrations assumes significance in the context of assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh early next year. Without naming Pakistan, PM Modi sent out a stern message on terrorism when he said that those who help terrorists and provide them shelter cannot be spared now. “It’s not possible to protect humanity without wiping out terrorism,” said PM Modi.
Making terrorism the centrepoint of his over 20-minute speech, he said terror was the worst enemy of humanity and
called upon the world community to speak in one voice against the menace to put an end to it. “When we burn Ravana, we should remember that humanity can’t be saved lest we fight terrorism together. Those who destroy our world are modern-day ‘Ravana’,” said PM Modi. “If you think that we are free from terrorism, then you are wrong. It is a virus affecting our society,” he added.
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During his address, PM Modi also urged the nation to be more vigilant against terrorist activities. He also said the world needs to united against terrorism as it has no boundaries. “If a country of 125 crore keep an eye on every terrorist activity, they will never succeed,” he said.
Aside from terrorism, PM Modi touched upon issues of communalism, casteism and nepotism saying these are other forms of evil that plague us. “Need to get rid of these ‘Ravanas’,” he said.
The theme of this year’s Dussehra here was ‘destruction of terrorism’. In the run up to the event today, there have
been many references to the surgical strikes by characters enacting Ramlila. In significant gestures, Modi was presented a Sudarshan Chakra, bow and arrow and a mace at the event, symbolising valour.
Earlier in the day, Union Home minister Rajnath Singh and UP Chief Minister Akhliesh Yadav welcomed PM Modi at the airport. Before the PM’s address, Rajnath Singh went on stage and said Prime Minister Narendra Modi proved to the world that India is no longer ‘weak’.