India to send manned space mission by 2022: Modi

New Delhi, Aug 15
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday announced a manned mission to space by 2022.

"In space technology, we have dreamt something, our scientists have dreamt something. And I am happy to announce that by 2022, the 75th Independence year, we are planning a manned space mission," Modi said in his Independence Day speech from the Red Fort.

"We will put an Indian in space by 2022 or earlier," he said.

He said India was proud of its scientists, who were excelling in their research and were at the forefront of innovation.

"Our scientists have made us proud. They launched over 100 satellites... They successfully completed the Mars mission."

Modi praises nation's 'daughters' for crossing 7 seas

 Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday praised a group of six women officers of the Navy for circumnavigating the globe, saying that the nation's daughters have crossed the seven seas and painted the world in tricolour.

"We are proudly celebrating Independence Day today as six women officers of the Indian Navy, circumnavigated the globe recently on the INSV Tarini," Modi said in his speech after unfurling the national flag at the Red Fort here.

Saluting the women, Modi said: "Our daughters have crossed all seven seas and have coloured the world in tricolour." 

Lieutenant Commanders Vartika Joshi, who led the team, and Prathibha Jamwal, and Lieutenants Swathi Patarpalli, Aishwarya Boddapati, Vijaya Devi and Payal Gupta spent over eight months at sea, sailing around the world in six legs on the Indian Naval Sailing Vehicle (INSV) Tarini.

The crew spent 194 days at sea and nearly eight months away from home port. 

It was the maiden attempt by an all women naval officers. They covered a distance of nearly 22,300 nautical miles (41,255 km).

The Prime Minister also hailed the tribal children for unfurling the national flag on Mount Everest.

"I would salute the children of tribals who unfurled the national flag on Mount Everest and made India proud," he added.

India now world's sixth largest economy: Modi

India is celebrating its 72nd Independence Day amid positivity and confidence stemming from its robust economy, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Wednesday.

"India has registered its name as the sixth largest economy in the world. It has created positivity. We are celebrating the festival of freedom in such a positive atmosphere," Modi said in his last Independence Day speech before the 2019 elections. 

"The country is brimming with self-confidence and is regularly crossing new heights."

Modi began his fifth speech from the Red Fort by talking about how his government had been working for the upliftment of Dalits and backward sections.

He said the government, at the recently concluded monsoon session of parliament, gave constitutional status to the OBC and SC-ST Commission to protect the rights of the underprivileged.

"The session was devoted to social justice. The session witnessed the passage of the bill to create an OBC Commission. Dalits, women and other weaker sections of the society have been empowered," he said.

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