Kevadia (Gujarat): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said that enemies were trying to break India’s unity and the country should stand firm against such attempts.
After paying tributes to India’s first home minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel on his birth anniversary at the Statue of Unity at Kevadia in Gujarat, Modi remembered those who died in Sunday’s Morbi bridge collapse incident. “I am in Kevadia, but my heart goes out to those who died in the Morbi bridge collapse tragedy,” the PM said as he got emotional.
Troupes from across the country had come to Kevadia to perform traditional dances, but the programme was cancelled due to the present circumstances, he said. At least 134 people were killed after the suspension bridge on the Machchhu river in Gujarat’s Morbi city collapsed on Sunday evening.
The prime minister assured the government was standing shoulder to shoulder with the families of the victims.
The state government has been engaged in the rescue work and the central government is providing every possible assistance, he said. Sardar Patel’s birth anniversary is observed as the Rashtriya Ekta Diwas or National Unity Day.
Modi said for India, its unity has never been a compulsion, but has been its uniqueness.
“This unity of our country has been an eyesore for our enemies. Not just today, but for thousands of years and even during the period of our slavery, all foreign attackers did whatever they wanted to do to break this unity,” he said. “The poison which was spread in that long period, the country is facing problems due to it today also. We saw the country’s Partition and enemies taking advantage of it,” Modi said.
Those forces are still prevalent, they want to make the people of the country fight in the name of caste, region and language, he said, adding that history is also presented in such a way that people cannot stand with each other.