NEW DELHI, Sept 17:
Prime Minister Narendra Modi turned 71 on Friday and birthday greetings poured in from President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and various leaders across parties while BJP leaders hailed his leadership.
To mark the day, the BJP has asked its workers to facilitate the COVID-19 vaccination drive as it eyes record-breaking numbers on Friday.
BJP president J P Nadda launched a mega 20-day public outreach, “Seva aur Samarpan”, to mark the prime minister’s birthday and it will continue till October 7 to also commemorate his 20 years in public life, including the period when he served as Gujarat chief minister.
Wishing him a long and healthy life, President Kovind hoped that Modi may continue to serve the nation with his spirit of relentless service.
Vice President Naidu said Modi’s exceptional vision, exemplary leadership and dedicated service have led to an all-around growth of the nation.
He also said amid challenges in the last one year, his efforts to encourage the spirit of self-reliance has borne fruits.
Home Minister Amit Shah lauded Modi, saying he not only gave the country the idea to think ahead of time and fulfil its resolve with hardwork but also made it a reality.
In Modi, the country has got a strong and decisive leader who gave a dignified life to those who were deprived of their rights for decades, he said.
Modi brought them in the mainstream of development, Shah added. The prime minister has shown the world what people-loving leadership is like, he said. A number of opposition leaders, including Rahul Gandhi of the Congress, Sharad Pawar of the NCP and Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, also extended wishes to Modi.
Pawar tweeted, “Warm Birthday Wishes to Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Ji. I wish him good health and happiness.” Gandhi said, “Happy birthday, Modi ji.”
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said Modi has written many new chapters in development and good governance in his tenure so far and wished that he fulfil his dream of making India a strong, prosperous and proud country.
Born in Gujarat in 1950, Modi joined Hindutva organisation Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) at an early age and was later drafted into the BJP.
Made Gujarat chief minister in 2001, Modi has never suffered an electoral setback when votes were cast on his leadership, leading the BJP to power in the state for three consecutive terms and then at the Centre back to back in 2014 and 2019.
The BJP will also be distributing over 14 crore ration kits and holding blood camps besides organising other welfare activities during the 20-day campaign.
In his greetings, Nadda hailed Modi as the most popular leader of the world, and said he is dedicated to the progress of the most deprived person in society and symbolises foresighted and decisive leadership besides tireless efforts.
The Dalai Lama also wished the prime minister and congratulated him on the growing confidence he had brought among the people, despite challenges such as the COVID-19 pandemic. In his letter to the prime minster, the Dalai Lama also said that as the most populous democratic nation in the world, India’s success benefits not only the people of the country, but also contributes to the development of the world as a whole. (PTI)
NEW DELHI, Sept 17: