Urging the country's youth to draw inspiration from Team India's historic test cricket victory at Australia's Gabba, clinched with less experienced players, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said India must fight back challenges with the same spirit.
In a virtual address to the outgoing students of the Tezpur University, PM Modi drew parallels between the country's performance during the coronavirus pandemic and India's 2-1 series win, adding "our action-reaction instinct has changed".
Soon after the historic win, the Prime Minister had tweeted a congratulatory message appreciating the team's "remarkable energy, passion and grit".
"In the beginning of the pandemic, people were apprehensive about what will happen in the absence of resources. But, the country showed resilience. India took quick, proactive decisions and did not wait for the problem to aggravate. With Made in India solutions, we controlled the spread of the virus and improved our health infrastructure," he said talking about India's home-grown vaccines that have the potential to "stop the pandemic".
Our vaccines are the outcome of trust in our scientists, PM Modi said referring to Bharat Biotech's Covaxin and AstraZeneca's Covishield being made in Pune's Serum Institute of India.
"We are entering 75 years of independence (in August). Now, you have to live for a new India, an Atmanirbhar Bharat (self-reliant India). From this year till the 100 years of independence is the golden period for the youth of this country," he said praising the Tezpur University's innovation centre and the water purifying technology developed there.
Stating that a positive mindset was critical for positive outcomes, the Prime Minister said this was also the essence of Atmanirbhar Bharat, or self-reliant India, a policy pursued by his government as a way for India to recover from the economic impact of the pandemic and make a greater space for itself on the global platform.
"The best example (of a change in mindset) is our cricket team which faced so many challenges. We lost badly, (but) we fought back and won under challenging conditions. They (cricket team) had less experience, but were high in confidence and they created history. The cricket success is a huge life lesson. We need to make our mindset positive," he said.
The statement comes in the backdrop of states struggling to meet their inoculation targets amid hesitancy to take the vaccine over fear of side-effects, especially since Bharat Biotech vaccine is being given in "trial mode".
To build confidence in the country's vaccines, which the government vouches are safe, an outreach programme has been started to alleviate fear. In phase 2, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, all Chief Ministers, MPs and MLAs above 50 are also expected to be vaccinated.