An Address to the Nation on the Eve of 55th Republic Day His Excellency Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam President of India

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Dear Citizens, on this important day on the eve of 55th Republic Day of India, I am indeed happy to greet all the billion citizens of our country including those living abroad. I also greet the members of the armed forces and paramilitary forces who guard our frontiers on the land, the sea and the air and also internal security forces. I would like to share some of my thoughts for evolution of a beautiful India, combining economic prosperity and value system drawn from our civilizational heritage.

Indian economic scenario

Indian economy shows a very robust and consistent growth, indicated by the recent 8.4% GDP growth in the second quarter of 2003-2004. Our foreign exchange reserves have crossed the $100 billion mark and are continuously rising. The rupee is steady and the middle class resurgence and the domestic buying power are on the rise. This has made our economy one of the fastest growing in the world. The time has come for these economic benefits to reach speedily the rural population through development programmes such as PURA - Providing Urban amenities in Rural Areas and Interlinking of Rivers. Economists all around the world predict that by the year 2020, the world economic scenario will be completely different from what it is today, and that India will occupy the pride of position.

Indian industries in certain sectors have matured to be very responsive to the national and international needs and have shown steady growth inspite of earlier adverse predictions. Interest rates from the banks need to be more proactive to stimulate the growth of the right type of small, medium scale industry and agro food processing industries. The combination of entrepreneurship education in the schools and colleges, the hassle free flow of venture capital and evolution of good market will give additional momentum for national growth.

Transforming India into a competitive beautiful nation

Dear citizens, for the next five years, with...
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