"As Simple..as Extraordinary" and a "Symbol of Resilience", PM Modi writes an emotional note on mother Heeraben's 100th birthday

Published date18 June 2022
Publication titleStatesman, The (India)
An emotional blog written in an autobiographical tone contains the references from many of his childhood anecdotes where the PM travels down the memory lane and describes how like a doting son he grew up watching his mother's 'struggle" and "hardships' who happily performed her "duties" accepting everything and everybody as "a mere instrument in the plans of God"

The PM in his blog specifies how, in his mother, he finds a true teacher from whom he learned his lessons for "discipline", "cleanliness", "simple lifestyle", "respect for others' choice", "garib kalyan", "honesty" and "true citizenry".

He writes that the biggest mantra of his mother's life has been the hard work and the biggest qualities which he grew up watching in his parents have been honesty and self-respect. "If I look back at my parents' lives, their honesty and self-respect have been their biggest qualities. Despite struggling with poverty and its accompanying challenges, my parents never left the path of honesty or compromised their self-respect. They had only one mantra to overcome any challenge – hard work and constant hard work!….. I have no doubt that everything good in my life and all that is good in my character can be attributed to my parents".

PM Modi takes his mother's birthday as an occasion to not only describe how his mother has been a true symbol of womanhood and empowerment he also uses it as an occasion to express how everything and every action in his life have been an inspiration from his mother. Every quality of his mother that the PM describes with the help of childhood anecdotes is relatable to every action of his life.

The PM's words are like a guide to leading an 'ideal life' where Modi talks about his education emphasizing how his mother taught him that it is "possible to be learned without formal education".

This is for the first time that any PM of country has expressed personal emotions on a public platform. Although PM Modi on several occasions in the past has posted pictures with his mother, this is for the first time he opened his heart and expressed emotions about his mother and his childhood journey with his parent.

Maa…this isn't a mere word but it captures a range of emotions. Today, 18th June is the day my Mother Heeraba enters her 100th year. On this special day, I have penned a few thoughts expressing joy and gratitude. https://t.co/KnhBmUp2se

— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 18, 2022

मां, ये सिर्फ एक शब्द नहीं है, जीवन की वो भावना है, जिसमें स्नेह, धैर्य, विश्वास, कितना कुछ समाया है।

मेरी मां, हीराबा आज 18 जून को अपने सौवें वर्ष में प्रवेश कर रही हैं, उनका जन्म शताब्दी वर्ष प्रारंभ हो रहा है। मैं अपनी खुशी और सौभाग्य साझा कर रहा हूं। https://t.co/4YHk1a59RD

— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 18, 2022

Took blessings of my mother today as she enters her 100th year… pic.twitter.com/lTEVGcyzdX

— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 18, 2022

Mother – is not just any other word in the dictionary. It encompasses a whole range of emotions – love, patience, trust, and a lot more. Across the world, irrespective of country or region, children have a special affection for their mothers.

A mother not only gives birth to her children, but also shapes their mind, their personality, and their self-confidence. And while doing so, mothers selflessly sacrifice their own personal needs and aspirations. Today, I feel extremely happy and fortunate to share that my mother Smt. Heeraba Modi is entering her hundredth year. This is going to be her birth centenary year. If my father had been alive, he too would have celebrated his 100th birthday last week. 2022 is a special year as my mother's centenary year is starting, and my father would have completed his.

Just last week, my nephew shared a few videos of Mother from Gandhinagar. A few youngsters from the society had come home, my father's photograph was kept on a chair, there was a kirtan, and Mother was immersed in singing bhajans while playing the manjeera. She is still the same – age may have taken a toll physically, but she is as mentally alert as ever. Earlier, there was no custom of celebrating birthdays in our family.

However, children from the younger generations planted 100 trees to remember my father on his birthday. I have no doubt that everything good in my life, and all that is good in my character, can be attributed to my parents. Today, as I sit in Delhi, I am filled with memories from the past. My Mother is as simple as she is extraordinary. Just like all mothers! As I write about my Mother, I am sure that many of you would relate to my description of her. While reading, you may even see your own mother's image.

A mother's penance creates a good human being. Her affection fills a child with human values and empathy. A mother is not an individual or a personality, motherhood is a quality. It is often said that the Gods are made according to the nature of their devotees. Similarly, we experience our mothers and their motherhood according to our own nature and mindset. My Mother was born in Visnagar in Mehsana in Gujarat, which is quite close to my hometown Vadnagar. She did not get her own mother's affection. At a tender age, she lost my grandmother to the Spanish Flu pandemic.

She does not even remember my grandmother's face or the comfort of her lap. She spent her entire childhood without her mother. She could not throw tantrums at her mother, as we all do. She could not rest in her mother's lap like we all do. She could not...

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