'Misapprehensions' in initial stages of reforms, but govt dedicated to farmers' welfare: Prez

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New Delhi, Jan 25 (PTI) President Ram Nath Kovind on Monday paid tributes to farmers saying every Indian is grateful to them for ensuring food security in our vast and populous country, and gave the assurance that the government is devoted to farmers' welfare.

'Every Indian salutes our farmers, who have made our vast and populous country self-reliant in food-grains and dairy products. Despite adversities of nature, numerous other challenges and the COVID-19 pandemic, our farmers sustained the agricultural production,' he said in his address on the eve of the 72nd Republic Day.

'A grateful nation is fully committed to the welfare of our farmers. Just as our hardworking farmers ensure food security for the country, the brave soldiers of the armed forces ensure security of our national boundaries amid severest conditions,' Kovind said.

The comments by the President come against the backdrop of the ongoing agitation by farmers against three new farm laws.

The President said the path to reforms in the initial stages may cause misapprehensions, but the government is devoted to farmers' welfare.

'Economic reforms have continued apace and have been supplemented by long-pending reforms in the areas of labour and agriculture through legislation. The path to reform at the initial stages may cause misapprehensions. However, it is beyond doubt that the government remains singularly devoted to farmers' welfare,' he said.

Kovind said the country's farmers, soldiers and scientists deserve special appreciation and the entire nation is grateful to them.

'From space to the farms, from educational institutions to hospitals, the community of scientists has enriched our life and work. Our scientists have been working day and night for decoding the Coronavirus and they have succeeded in developing the vaccine in record time. With this accomplishment, our scientists have added a glorious chapter of contribution to the well-being of humanity.

'Our scientists, along with doctors, administrators and people from other walks of life, have made major contribution in containing the virus and keeping the fatality rate lower in our country, compared to that in developed countries. Thus, all our farmers, soldiers and scientists deserve special appreciation and a grateful nation greets them on this auspicious occasion of the Republic Day,' he said. PTI SKL RDM RDM