Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said his government would focus on uplift of the poor while working for development of all sections, including Muslims, and promised to take along every political party and state to make the country prosperous and powerful.
In his first speech in the Lok Sabha, he talked about his "dreams" of ensuring the country's progress and converting the image from "scam India" to "skills India" through "cooperative federalism".
He specifically mentioned his ideas about improving the agriculture and infrastructure sectors and for which best practices of any state would be adopted.
He said the foremost priority of his government would be uplift of the poor and ensuring that nobody is without a house with water, electricity and toilet by 2022, when the country celebrates 75th year of Independence.
Replying to the debate on Motion of Thanks to the President's Address, Narendra Modi asserted, "We can bring about change" but "I don't want to move forward without you (Opposition). I don't have to move forward on the basis of numbers but on the basis of collective decision-making."
He referred to apprehensions expressed by some members over the fate of minorities and said his government would work for the development of Muslims also as he believes that "if one organ of the body remains weak, the body cannot be termed as healthy. We are committed to this. We don't see it as appeasement."
In his hour-long speech heard in rapt attention, the Prime Minister rejected the Opposition's charge that BJP had become arrogant after the landslide victory in the Lok Sabha elections.
"Victory gives lessons and we must learn. It teaches us humility," he said and assured the House that he would take the "blessings of seniors" so that "we are saved from becoming arrogant".
Invoking Mahatma Gandhi repeatedly, Modi said, "Let us dream and make effort to fulfill those dreams. There will be difficulties but with your (opposition) cooperation we will move forward."
Underlining that decisions have to be taken with great courage, Modi made it clear that he would not be discouraged by criticism. "We welcome criticism. The more the criticism, the better it is... It is for the welfare of the country...In a democracy, criticism gives strength and it will guide us."
Invoking Mahatma Gandhi repeatedly, the Prime Minister stressed the need for converting development as a mass movement like the Father of the Nation had