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''I am aware that an aspirational India is emerging'': Mukherjee

''I am aware that an aspirational India is emerging'': Mukherjee New Delhi, Feb. 21 : President Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday said that an aspirational India is emerging that demands more opportunities, greater choices, better infrastructure, and enhanced safety and security.

"As I speak to you, I am aware that an aspirational India is emerging, an India that demands more opportunities, greater choices, better infrastructure, and enhanced safety and security. Our youth, our greatest national asset, are a confident and courageous lot. I have no doubt that their passion, energy and enterprise will take India to new heights," said President Mukherjee.

"Amidst these aspirations, we are also burdened by gathering anxieties about economic slowdown, job security and employment prospects. People are concerned about the security of our women and children. They are also anxious about timely delivery of their entitlements and about persisting social and economic inequality," he added, while addressing a joint session of Parliament for the first time as President.

President Mukherjee further said India stands tall as a nation because we are seen as a liberal and plural democracy, which has faced and overcome tremendous odds.

"The world recognizes India''s demonstrable democratic and secular practices as a major achievement. While we should rejoice in the benefits that our plurality brings, the challenge is to relentlessly pursue our efforts to accelerate economic growth and widen opportunities within our democratic framework," said President Mukherjee.

"It is only if we constantly renew and defend the democratic values that define our nationhood that we will be able to face the great challenges that lie before us. On behalf of my Government, I appeal to all of you to support our endeavours in marching ahead as a proud," he added. (ANI)