India's PM addresses nation on Independence Day

AFP/ MONEY SHARMA

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a national day address that India will aim to become a developed nation within 25 years, with policies to support domestic production in power, defence and digital technology.

Speaking from the 17th century Red Fort in Delhi, Modi encouraged youth to "aim big" and give their best years for the cause of the country.

"We must turn India into a developed country in the next 25 years, in our lifetime," said the 71-year-old Modi, wearing a turban in the colours of the Indian flag, in his 75-minute-speech in Hindi.

"It's a big resolution, and we should work towards it with all our might."

India is the world's sixth-largest economy and is expected to grow at over 7% in the current fiscal year ending in March 2023 - the fastest among major economies.

Many experts say India's economy could expand to become the world's third-largest by 2050 after the United States and China, although per capita income, currently around $2,100, may remain low compared to many countries.

With about 1.4 billion people, India is expected to surpass China as the world's most populous country next year.

Countries like the United States already see India as a future challenger to China's dominating influence in Asia and beyond. U.S. President Joe Biden on Sunday congratulated India for its national day and said the United States and India were "indispensable partners" that would continue to work together to address global challenges in the years ahead. 

Meanwhile, Indians across the UAE have been celebrating Independence Day.

The Indian Ambassador to the UAE, His Excellency Sunjay Sudhir has been speaking exclusively to ARN about marking the event, following the lifting of some Covid 19 restrictions. 

And the Ambassador told us what events have been planned for the day.

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