Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid rich tributes to one of the greatest freedom fighters of the country as he received the Lokmanya Tilak National Award in Pune on Tuesday.
“This is a memorable moment for me. While I am very happy to be here, I am also feeling emotional. Lokmanya Tilak is the tilak of our freedom struggle” the Prime Minister said.
“The contribution of Lokmanya Tilak in India’s independence cannot be summed up in a few words or by illustrating a few incidents,” PM Modi said.
“I pay homage to him and all our freedom fighters. I am honoured to be on Maharashtra soil. This is the land of Chhatrapati Shivaji and Jyotirba Phule,” he added.
The Prime Minister said that he has decided to donate the prize money from the award to the Namami Gange project aimed at reducing pollution in the Ganga and rejuvenating the national river.
“I have decided to donate the prize money to the Namami Gange project. I want to dedicate this award to 140 crore people of the country,” the Prime Minister said.
“The vision of ‘Vyavastha Nimaan Se Sanstha Nirmaan’, ‘Sanstha Nirmaan Se Vyakti Nirmaan’, ‘Vyakti Nirmaan Se Rasthra Nirmaan’ is a roadmap for nation building. India is following this roadmap diligently,” PM Modi added.
The Prime Minister was addressing an event where he shared the stage with Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) stalwart Sharad Pawar who had come to attend the prestigious event cutting across party lines.
VIDEO | PM Modi receives Lokmanya Tilak National Award in Pune, on the 103rd death anniversary of freedom fighter Bal Gangadhar Tilak.
(Source: Third Party) pic.twitter.com/2KKNgqrCJW
— Press Trust of India (@PTI_News) August 1, 2023
The Award was constituted by Tilak Smarak Mandir Trust in 1983, to honour the legacy of Lokmanya Tilak.
With this award, PM Modi became the 41st recipient of the award. The former recipients include luminaries such as Shankar Dayal Sharma, Pranab Mukherjee, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Indira Gandhi, Manmohan Singh, NR Narayana Murthy, and E Sreedharan, among others.
Earlier on Tuesday, PM Modi reached Pune as part of a day-long visit. He is scheduled to launch various development projects later in the day.
He will also be taking part in different programmes in the city.
During his day-long Pune visit, Prime Minister Modi will also flag off Metro trains and inaugurate and lay the foundation stone of various development projects, according to a PMO statement.