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Aligarh: Here is what PM Modi said at the inauguration of Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh State University

PM Modi said, “The world is seeing that from grenade to riffles to fighter jets to drones, everything is being manufactured in India. After decades as a defence importer, India is now on the path to becoming a major defence exporter."

Wishing the people of Aligarh on the auspicious occasion of Radha Ashtami, Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of a university named after Jat king Mahendra Pratap Singh on Tuesday.

The ceremony was followed by an inspection of exhibition models of the Aligarh node that is a part of the state’s industrial defence corridor.

“We must not forget our history”

Remembering the late BJP leader and former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Kalyan Singh, PM Modi went on to explain the importance of knowing our history.

“We have had several freedom fighters who at different stages proved their might and gave sacrifices for the nation. But it is unfortunate that the youth of the nation were not introduced to such icons post gaining independence,” said PM Modi expressing content that these mistakes are being rectified.

“As we celebrate Azadi ka Amrut Mahotsav, honest efforts are being made to make the young generation aware of contributions of Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh and others in our independence struggle,” he said further. 

Praising the Jat leader on whose name the university is being built, PM Modi said, “The life of Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh gives us indomitable willpower, the vitality that we do to fulfil our dreams.”

UP is a ‘double-engine’ government

PM Modi also applauded UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath for getting the state on the path of development and making it a go-to destination for investments. 

“Uttar Pradesh is benefitting greatly from the double-engine government at the state and Centre. There was a time when UP was considered a limitation and hindrance to India’s growth, but today due to dozens of projects being done in the state, UP has totally changed its image and is today fuelling India’s growth,” remarked PM Modi.

Taking a jibe at the state opposition, he further said, “There was a time when UP was infamous for its gunda-raj, mafia-raj and free run of gangsters, but under the Yogi government, all this has come to a stop. Gangsters, mafias and gundas are kept where they belong – behind bars.”

“India is now a defence exporter”

Emphasizing on the defence corridor PM Modi said, “The world is seeing that from grenade to riffles to fighter jets to drones, everything is being manufactured in India. Even after decades of gaining independence, India was seen as a defence importer, however, breaking the shackles we are now seen as defence exporters.” 

Making an analogy between the famous locks of Aligarh and the defence corridor, PM Modi said that the city will now contribute towards the protection of India’s borders as well. He further announced a package of Rs 9000 crores for the development of BrahMos missile at the defence corridor’s Lucknow node.

Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh State University

Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh State University is being established over 92 acres of land in memory and honour of Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh, who was a freedom fighter, educationist and social reformer. 

The university is set to come up at the Lodha and Musepur Kareem Jarouli villages of Aligarh’s Kol tehsil. It will also provide affiliation to 395 colleges of the Aligarh division.

Who was Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh?

Born on 01 December 1886, Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh was born in a royal Jat family. He was the king of a small principality called Mursan in the Hathras district in western Uttar Pradesh and inherited his estate from his father Raja Ghanshyam Singh.

Raja Mahendra Pratap, however, was drawn to India’s freedom movement. Inspired by the speeches of nationalist Congress leaders such as Dadabhai Naoriji and Bal Gangadhar Tilak, he disregarded his family’s views and travelled to Kolkata (then Calcutta) to attend the Congress’s annual session in 1906. He later turned Swadeshi and vowed to fight the colonial rule.

In 1914, Raja Mahendra Pratap left India to seek global support against the British rule. He travelled to Switzerland, Germany, Austria and Turkey. 

A year later he reached Afghanistan and established the first ‘Government of India’ in exile in Kabul. This step earned Raja Mahendra Pratap great respect from a wide spectrum of Indian society.

He returned to India three decades later in 1946, met Mahatma Gandhi at Wardha Ashram and entered electoral politics a decade later. He breathed his last in 1979.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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