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India happy to share its expertise in holding free, fair elections: PM Modi at Joe Biden-hosted summit

“The Indian story has one clear message to the world that democracy can deliver, has delivered and will continue to deliver,” said PM Modi during the Summit.

India happy to share its expertise in holding free, fair elections: PM Modi at Joe Biden-hosted summit-dnm
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New Delhi, First Published Dec 10, 2021, 6:55 PM IST
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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday addressing the ‘Summit for Democracy’ videoconferencing, called for united efforts to shape global norms for emerging technologies like social media and cryptocurrencies so that they are used to “empower democracy, not to undermine it”. He said the story of India serves as a clear message to the world that the power of democracy can, has and will always deliver.

“The Indian story has one clear message to the world that democracy can deliver, has delivered and will continue to deliver,” said PM Modi during the Summit.

Sharing his vision of democracy, the Prime Minister added, “Democracy is just not about of, by or for the people but also with the people and within the people.”

Modi said India would be happy to share its expertise in holding free and fair elections.

He also said that “democracy is not only of the people, by the people, for the people but also with the people, within the people.” The prime minister said the structural features such as multi-party elections, independent judiciary and free media are important instruments of democracy.

“However, the basic strength of democracy is the spirit and ethos that lie within our citizens and our societies,” he added.

Appreciating the initiative that would furthering cooperation among democracies, PM Modi said India would be happy to share its expertise in holding free and fair elections, and in enhancing transparency in all areas of governance through innovative digital solutions. 

“We must also jointly shape global norms for emerging technologies like social media and crypto-currencies, so that they are used to empower democracy, not to undermine it,” he added.

During his speech, the Prime Minister invoked historical civilisational ethos of India and said that the democratic spirit is integral to our civilization ethos. “Elected republican city-states such as Lichhavi and Shakya flourished in India as far as 2500 years back. The same democratic spirit is seen in the 10th Century "Uttaramerur" inscription that codified the principles of democratic participation.”

Talking about the British regime in India, he said that the centuries of colonial rule could not suppress the democratic spirit of the Indian people. 

“It again found full expression with India's independence, and led to an unparalleled story in democratic nation-building over the last 75 years,” he said. 

He also expressed that India stands ready to join fellow democracies to meet the aspirations of our citizens and celebrate the democratic spirit of humanity.

On the opening day of the event on Thursday, US President Joe Biden had invoked India’s Father of Nation Mahatma Gandhi and South African Nelson Mandela. 

Biden had also said that Congressman John Lewis was a great champion of democracy and civil rights around the world and took inspiration from other great leaders - Gandhi and Mandela.

“Democracies are not all the same. We don't agree on everything. But the choices that we are going to make today together are going to define, in my way, the course of our shared future for generations to come,” he added.

The US had invited 110 countries to attend this event. However, it had not extended invitation to countries like Russia, China, Saudi Arabia among a dozen nations.

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