Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday, 31 October visited the 'Statue of Unity' at Kevadiya in Gujarat to pay tributes to Sardar Patel on his 144th birth anniversary.
PM Modi offered floral tributes to the 'Iron Man of India' at the Statue of Unity. Later, he also tweeted about Patel.
Speaking about Sardar Patel, he said, “Sardar Sahib always spoke about unity of purpose, unity of aim and unity of endeavour.”
The statue, world’s tallest monument, dedicated to Sardar Patel, was inaugurated by Modi on 31 October last year.
PM Modi also spoke about the abolition of Article 370, comparing it to a wall that had been demolished.
“Article 370 only gave separatism and terrorism to J&K. It was the only place in the country where Article 370 was present, where in last three decades, over 40,000 people got killed and several mothers lost their sons due to terrorism. Now this wall of Article 370 has been demolished,” PM Modi said.
He also said that J&K had seen a 98 percent voter turnout in the recently held Block Development Council (BDC) polls, saying that this level of participation showed unity and political stability in the region.
“Recently, 98 percent of panch-sarpanches voted in the BDC elections held for the first time after independence there. This participation is a big message,” PM Modi said.
PM Modi also spoke about the 'Run for Unity' program which is being held in different cities and villages across the country on Thursday.
Since 2014, 31 October is observed as the National Unity Day and people from all walks of life participate in the ‘Run For Unity’.
The PM thanked citizens for participating in this program and said that India is known for its 'unity in diversity’.
The prime minister arrived late Wednesday evening and spent the night at Raj Bhawan in Gandhinagar.
‘Rashtriya Ekta Diwas Parade’, Other Events
After paying tributes to Sardar Patel, the prime minister will witness the ‘Rashtriya Ekta Diwas Parade’ by personnel of Gujarat Police and central armed forces.
Trained personnel of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), National Security Guard (NSG), and from the police forces of Gujarat and Jammu and Kashmir performed various demonstrations before the PM near the statue.
PM Modi is scheduled to participate in the 'Ekta Diwas Parade' and visit a technology demonstration site, where he will interact with civil service probationers at Kevadiya, a statement from the Prime Minister's Office said on Wednesday.
Later, in the afternoon, he is supposed to interact with around 450 civil service probationers from across the country. They are at Kevadiya since last one week for a foundation course of the Centre’s Department of Personnel and Training.
The prime minister will also have lunch with the probationary officers, before proceeding to the 'Statue of Unity' for a group photo.
In the evening, Modi will leave for Vadodara airport from where he would be flown back to Delhi in an Air Force plane, it added.
(With inputs from ANI.)