Prime Minister Modi on Sunday in his Mann ki Baat address paid homage to PV Narasimha Rao, the ninth Prime Minister of India on his birth anniversary. Hailing him as someone who raised his voice against injustice, Modi said that the nation is indebted to Narasimha Rao for leading the country through a difficult phase.
"He was one of the most experienced leaders of India. But, there is another aspect of his life which is remarkable that we should know. Friends, Narasimha Rao ji had joined the freedom movement in his teens and when the Nizam of Hyderabad refused to grant permission to sing Vande Mataram, he took an active part in the movement against the Nizam and at that time, he was only 17 years old. From a young age, Shriman Narasimha Rao was always ready to raise his voice against injustice," Modi said in the 66th edition of his monthly radio program Mann ki Baat.
Modi added that Narasimha Rao also had a sound understanding of history. "His rise from a very simple background, his emphasis on education, his tendency to learn, and, with all this, his leadership ability - everything is memorable,” Modi said.
India's Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu also paid homage to the former Prime Minister and remembered the measures that Rao had taken to liberalise the economy. "He sought to dismantle the restrictions imposed under the license raj, reduce red tape and make Indian industries more competitive," the Vice President recalled. Talking about how the former Prime Minister had laid the foundation for trade liberalisation and the re-integration of the Indian economy with the global economy, especially East Asian economies, the Vice President said, "This was a major shift from the inward orientation of the previous regimes to a new trajectory of globally integrated development".
Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao, announced that beginning from Sunday the state will observe year-long centenary celebrations of PV Narasimha Rao beginning today. The government has urged Telugu associations across 51 countries to celebrate "on a grand scale". Telangana IT Minister KT Rama Rao said the state government "will pitch for conferring Bharat Ratna to PV Narasimha Rao."
Congress' official twitter handle also put out a tweet commemorating the birth centenary of the former Prime Minister: "We honour P. V. Narsimha Rao, a visionary leader who oversaw major economic transformations of the Indian economy. His contributions to the nation shall never beforgotten," the tweet read.