Narendra Modi Makes Independence Day Speech
Prime Minister Narendra Modi prefers businessmen to journalists?Reuters

"Pradhan Sevak" Narendra Modi stuck to his style and delivered an extempore speech on the 68th Independence Day at the Red Fort on Friday, making some significant announcements and appeals.

Read Live Coverage of Modi's Maiden I-Day Speech

Here are some of the biggest takeaways from Modi's speech, touted to be the longest I-Day speech since Pandit Nehru delivered his.

Planning Commission to go: Modi's announcement to scrap the Planning Commission and replace it with a "super think-tank" was the most significant part of his speech.

The Planning Commission, a 65-year-old policy-making body that lays down five-year plans for the government is said to have waned in the light of new economic realities.

"There has been a lot of talk about what will this government do about Planning Commission. From the ramparts of the Red Fort today, I announce that ... we will build a new institution that will cater to the needs of the new economic environment," Modi said in his speech.

He said that a new institution would be set up in place of the Planning Commission, which will be based on economic federalism, public-private partnerships and economic realities.

Make in India: "Come make in India. Be it plastics or cars or satellites or agricultural products, come make in India," Modi said passionately, calling businesses around the world to begin manufacturing in India.

Stating that India must become a nation that exports instead of imports, Modi said, "We need to encourage the manufacturing sector. We need to channelise the strength of the youth through manufacturing."

New Schemes for poor, villages: Standing true to expectation, Modi did announce some very significant schemes that will focus on financial inclusion of the poor and ensure rural development. Modi announced the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana to provide the poor with bank accounts. "Today, most people have mobile phones, but many do not have bank accounts," said Modi, characteristic of his scathing views on realities in the country. "The person who will open bank account will get a debit card and the family will get Rs 1 lakh insurance cover."
Modi also announced the unique scheme 'Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana', urging MPs to adopt a village and turn it into a "model village (adarsh gram)" by developing schools, roads and environment. "Our MPs should at least do this much. The nation's progress must begin with rural development," he said.

Modi announced that the blueprint for this scheme will be ready by 11 October, which marks Jayaprakash Narayan's anniversary.

Batting for women: With the rising spate of crimes against women making a big blot on the country, Modi took up the issue and hit at the root of the problem – the upbringing of men.

"Parents ask their daughters to be careful when they are stepping out, but do they ask their sons where they are going? Those who rape are also someone's sons. It is the responsibility of parents to bring their sons on the right path," he said, rightly addressing the root social cause behind crimes against women.

He also addressed the issue of female foeticide, citing the poor sex ratio in he country.

"Daughters have contributed to the nation", he said, referring to the female ahletes who brought glory to the nation in the recent Commonwealth Games.

Moratorium on Violence: In an apparent bid to reach out to the Opposition that has been pointing fingers at the government for the increasing cases of communal violence, Modi called for a 10-year moratorium on caste and communal violence.

Clean India, Digital India: Modi's emphasis on cleanliness and digitalization does not come as a surprise considering he has expressed his views on the subjects several times before.

Modi called for a 'Clean India' by the 150th anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi in 2019, and pushed for e-governance.