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World needs governments free from corruption: PM

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Dubai: Stressing on his ‘minimum government, maximum governance’ mantra, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said the world today needs governments that are inclusive and free from corruption.
The prime minister also said the people today need governments that can provide – Ease of Living, Ease of Justice, Ease of Mobility, Ease of Innovation and Ease of Doing Business.
Addressing the World Governments Summit here on the second day of his visit to the UAE, Modi said that the government should interfere as little as possible in the lives of people.
“I believe that people should neither feel the absence of a government, but at the same time, nor should there be pressure from the government,” he told the gathering that has seen the participation of 10 Presidents and 10 Prime Ministers from across the globe.
Modi also urged the gathering that given the interconnected nature of the world, governments must collaborate and learn from each other to address future challenges.
Stressing that it was the need of the hour for governance to be “Inclusive, Tech-smart, Clean and Transparent and Green,” Modi said, “The world today needs governments that are inclusive, take everyone along, and are clean and free from corruption.”
As chief minister of Gujarat and then, as Prime Minister, Modi said, he has spent 23 years in government with the principle of “minimum government, maximum governance.”
The theme for the World Governments Summit is ‘Shaping Future Governments’ with the conversation involving governments, international organisations, thought leaders, and private sector leaders from over 120 countries.
In the last few years, the Prime Minister noted that in India, “People have trust in the intent and commitment of the Indian government. This was possible only because we prioritised public sentiments.”
Modi also emphasised on the “great transformation” in recent times that Bharat has seen. “Be it Bharat’s sanitation drive, digital literacy campaign or girl education campaign, the success of each such big goal has been ensured only through people’s participation.”
Highlighting the achievements of his government, Modi said it focused on women-led development, strengthening the financial, social, and political conditions of Indian women and that social and financial inclusion has been his government’s priority. “Over 50 crore people were connected to the banking system. These were the people who didn’t have any bank accounts!” he said.
The Prime Minister also drew attention towards “our consistent efforts” because of which India is shining on the global stage in the fields of fintech and digital payments.
Technology is proving to be a key disruptor, be it positive or negative, he said.
“Terrorism in various forms is bringing new challenges before humanity every day. Today, climate challenges are becoming widespread with time. On the one hand, there are domestic concerns, on the other hand, the international system seems in disarray,” Modi said.
Elaborating on India’s steadfast commitment to climate change action, he called on people to join Mission LiFE’ (Lifestyle for Environment) to create a sustainable world.
Launched by Modi at the Glasgow edition of the annual climate change talks, LiFE encourages adopting a lifestyle that will cut down on carbon emissions.
In his remarks, Modi also said, “The way Dubai is emerging is an epicentre of global economy, commerce and technology, it represents a splendid example before the globe.”
The World Government Summit has become a great medium to bring together thought leaders from across the world on a common platform, he said and hailed the UAE President Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed as “a leader with vision and resolve.”
The Prime Minister elaborated on the leadership role played by India as the chair of G-20 last year, on a wide range of issues and challenges facing the world.
In this context, he highlighted the efforts made by India to bring development concerns facing the Global South to the centre stage of global discourse.
Calling for reform of multilateral institutions, he pushed for a greater voice for the Global South in its decision-making. “India will continue to contribute to global progress based on its role as a Vishwa Bandhu.'”
Earlier, the Prime Minister had attended the World Governments Summit in 2018, also as a Guest of Honour.
Prime Minister Modi, who began his two-day visit to the Arab nation on Tuesday, was welcomed by UAE President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan on his arrival.
On Tuesday night, the Burj Khalifa was lit up with the words Guest of Honor-the Republic of India’ ahead of Modi’s address.

Modi inaugurates first Hindu temple in Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday inaugurated Abu Dhabi’s first Hindu stone temple amid devotional chants and in the presence of spiritual leaders of the Swaminarayan sect.
Dressed in a light pink silk dhoti and kurta paired with a sleeveless jacket and stole, the prime minister participated in rituals of a ceremony to dedicate the temple to the people.
The prime minister also participated in “Global Aarti”, which was performed simultaneously at over 1,200 temples of the Swaminarayan sect worldwide built by the Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS). Earlier, Modi met people from different faiths who contributed to the construction of the first Hindu stone temple. The prime minister also offered water in the virtual Ganga and Yamuna rivers at the temple before proceeding to inaugurate the temple built on a 27-acre site in Abu Mreikhah, near Al Rahba off the Dubai-Abu Dhabi Sheikh Zayed Highway, at a cost of around Rs 700 crore.
According to the temple authorities, the grand temple has been built as per an ancient style of construction and creation mentioned in the Shilpa and Sthapathya Shastras, Hindu scriptures which describe the art for mandir design and construction.
“The architectural methods have been clubbed with scientific techniques here. Over 300 high-tech sensors have been installed at every level of the temple to measure temperature, pressure and movement (seismic activity). The sensors will provide live data for research. If there is any earthquake in the region, the temple will detect it, and we will be able to study,” Swami Brahmaviharidas, head of international relations for BAPS, told PTI.
No metal has been used in the construction of the temple and fly ash has been used to fill up the foundation, replacing 55 per cent of cement in the concrete mix, reducing the carbon footprint of the temple.
Madhusudan Patel, the temple’s construction manager, told PTI, “We have used heat-resistant nano tiles and heavy glass panels, merging both traditional aesthetic stone structures with modern-day functionality. Considering the extreme temperatures in the UAE, the tiles will be comfortable for visitors to walk even in hot weather. Non-ferrous material has also been used in the temple.”
Constructed with 18 lakh bricks, seven lakh man hours and 1.8 lakh cubic metres of sandstone sourced directly from Rajasthan Abu Dhabi’s first Hindu temple has been made in the Nagara style of architecture, just like the recently inaugurated Ram Temple in Ayodhya.
According to Umesh Raja, a volunteer at the temple, 20,000 tonnes of sandstone pieces were carved in Rajasthan and then shipped to Abu Dhabi in 700 containers.
“Not just the stone, many labourers who helped construct the temple over five years belong to Gujarat and Rajasthan. Even the marble mined from Italy was first shipped to India for carving and then back to the UAE to be used in the interiors,” he said.
The work for the structure has been going on since 2019. The land for the temple was donated by the UAE government. The UAE has three other Hindu temples that are located in Dubai. The BAPS temple, spread over a large area with stone architecture, will be the largest of all in the Gulf region.
Prime Minister Modi is in the UAE on a two-day visit, his seventh visit to the Emirates since 2015 and his third in the last eight months.

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