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SOURCE: PTI

Be it terrorism or expansionism, the Indian security forces are giving a befitting response, President Droupadi Murmu said here on Wednesday, while asserting that the Modi government’s efforts to strengthen internal security are visible to everyone.

Addressing the joint sitting of Parliament at the beginning of Budget session, Murmu also said there is a sense of security in Jammu and Kashmir and there has been a significant reduction in the incidents of separatism in the Northeast.

“Today, my government is building modern infrastructure along the entire border. This work should have been done long ago on a priority basis. Be it terrorism or expansionism, our forces today are giving a befitting response,” she said amidst thumping of desks by members of both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.

The India-China border standoff on China’s claim over territories India believes its own in Ladakh is yet to be resolved despite the two sides holding multiple meetings since April 2020.

Twenty Indian Army soldiers were killed in a clash with China’s PLA at Galwan in Ladakh on June 15, 2020.

Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankhar, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, his cabinet colleagues, Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla and Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Mallikarjun Kharge besides others were present when the president delivered her address at the new Parliament building.

The president said the tangible results of the Modi government’s efforts to strengthen internal security are visible before everyone.

“There is a sense of security in Jammu and Kashmir today. The earlier deserted look of market places due to strike has been replaced by the hustle and bustle of crowded markets. There has been a significant reduction in the incidents of separatism in the Northeast. Many organisations have taken steps towards permanent peace. Naxal-affected areas have shrunk and there has been a steep decline in Naxal violence,” she said.

Murmu said the central government has, for the first time, brought development to areas which had remained neglected for decades.

“The villages adjoining our borders were viewed as the last villages of the country. We recognised them as the first villages of the country. In order to develop these villages, Vibrant Village Programme has been started,” she said.

The president said remote and faraway islands like Andaman and Nicobar and Lakshadweep were also deprived of development but the government has developed modern facilities on these islands too.

“Roads, air connectivity and high speed internet facilities have been provided there. Just a few weeks ago, Lakshadweep was also connected with underwater optical fibre. This will benefit the local population as well as tourists,” she said.

The president said under the ‘Aspirational Districts Programme’, the government has laid emphasis on the development of more than 100 districts of the country.

She said in the wake of its success, the government has also launched the Aspirational Blocks Programme.

Murmu said building of airports at various places is also advantageous and now the Northeast is witnessing record tourist arrivals.

Now there is heightened excitement about Andaman and Nicobar and Lakshadweep islands, she said.