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Mann Ki Baat | PM Modi hails India’s start-up culture, says country has become a nation of job creators, not job seekers

“Never forget that coronavirus is not gone yet," PM Modi said in his monthly radio broadcast ‘Mann ki Baat’

The turning point in India’s growth story is that it has become a nation of job creators rather than job seekers, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday, hailing a recent surge in start-ups valued over a billion dollars.

Addressing the nation through his monthly ‘Mann Ki Baat’ radio programme, Mr. Modi also reminded listeners that the pandemic is still ongoing and urged them to maintain safety protocols. “Never forget that coronavirus is not gone yet. It is the responsibility of us all to continue to take necessary precautions,” he said, a day after chairing a review of the situation, public health preparedness and the status of vaccinations.

Flying high in world of unicorns

During his address, the PM noted that till 2015, the country had only nine or 10 unicorns, the name given to start-ups whose valuation has crossed a billion dollars. “You will be very happy to know that now India is flying high even in the world of unicorns.

According to a report, a big change has come this year. In just 10 months, a unicorn is being raised in India every 10 days. This is also a big thing because our youth have achieved this success in the midst of the pandemic. Today there are more than 70 unicorns in India,” he said.

Adding that Indian youth start-ups were solving global problems, Mr. Modi interacted with a young man named Mayur Patil who had developed air filter technology to reduce emissions while improving mileage in vehicles. After installing it in 10 buses of the regional transport corporation in 2017-18, they found that fuel efficiency had increased 10%, while emissions were reduced by 40%. The patent was granted this year, and when Mayur and three of his friends participated in NITI Aayog’s Atal New India Challenge, they received a ₹90-lakh grant which enabled them to start a factory to mass produce the air filters.

The PM offered Mr. Patil’s experience as an example of a societal mindset change in favour of entrepreneurs. “This is the turning point of India’s growth story, where people are now not only dreaming of becoming job seekers but also becoming job creators. This will further strengthen India’s stature on the global stage.”

Community efforts to safeguard environment

The PM also hailed community efforts to safeguard the environment, from river rejuvenation to support farmers in Uttar Pradesh’s Jalaun to palmyra planting in Tamil Nadu’s Thoothukudi to prevent soil erosion and the submersion of coastal islands during cyclones. “Nature poses a threat to us only when we disturb her balance or destroy her sanctity,” said Mr. Modi.

Mr. Modi also interacted with beneficiaries of the Ayushmaan Bharat scheme, who had received free medical treatment.

Looking ahead to December, the Prime Minister noted that the month will mark the golden jubilee of the 1971 war and the annual celebration of Navy Day and Armed Forces Flag Day. Noting that the nation will commemorate the death anniversary of Babasaheb Ambedkar on December 6, the PM said the basic spirit of the Constitution expected all citizens to discharge their duties and urged a pledge to fulfil duties as an apt tribute to the drafter of the Constitution.