Pratibha Patil, India’s current commander-in-chief delivered a regular fare as part of the customary independence day address to the nation. Against the backdrop of the current turmoil in Jammu and Kashmir she said ‘whatever the problem, whatever the cause, whatever the reason, there is no place for violence in our society’. She also added ‘the paths of peace and compromise can be complex and difficult’. Without making any references to the ongoing crisis in Jammu and Kashmir, she said that ‘There have been instances in our country of people taking the law into their own hands and causing destruction to life and public property’ Well let me tell you madam, its very easy to make such statements from your plush office, have you made any efforts within the powers (whatever that may be) vested in you to do something about this issue
In her speech that appeared to be nothing more than a marketing propaganda of the UPA government she talked about the need to explore alternative sources of energy, quoting Mrs Patil here ‘With the challenges of increased oil prices and climate change, the question of energy security confronts us. We need to look at energy mixes that are sustainable in the long run and are cleaner sources of energy, gradually making deliberate shift to renewable energy’. I must say the script writers for her speech were dead right on this. Even though the point here is relevant, looked from a different perspective it appears as another exercise to market the nuclear deal pushed by the UPA government
Mrs Patil also touched upon the issue of terrorism; she mentioned ‘We must stand united against the threats emanating from terrorism. Terrorists, with their disruptive agenda, will never succeed in discouraging us from our resolve to build a strong India, or from working with our neighbors to eliminate this menace from our region, or from our commitment to forge co-operative relations with other countries across the world’. Madamji, its frustrating to hear this again and again, if you have the courage try telling this face-to-face to the relatives of the innocent victims who pay the prize of such heinous act; its time to act, we have seen enough speaking
In her speech Mrs Patil touched on every topic worth its salt including social evils, agriculture, terrorism, alternative energy, achievement of the UPA government, it appeared as if she wanted to do justice to her position after all its not everyday that she gets dedicated air-time.
To sum it up, I found the speech as bland as the president’s character. She has a scandalous background and is a true rubber-stamp of the government. I sincerely miss Dr. Abdul Kalam’s tenure as the president of India, he had a charisma and an awe-inspiring nature that none of the presidents so far can even think of matching.
Finally, Independence day speeches by the commander-in-chief of the country are suppose to inspire nationalism amongst the countrymen, unfortunately, it’s become more general pep talk that we all hear so often.