New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: President Ram Nath Kovind on Friday expressed his disappointment on violence in Delhi on Republic Day and said that the insult of the national flag was "unfortunate".

Addressing the joint session of the Parliament, President Kovind said that the central government is trying to address the concerns of farmers protesting against three farm laws. He also stressed that 'Aatmnirbhar Bharat Abhiyan' focuses on the farm sector.

Noting that farm laws were passed after "extensive deliberations", President Kovind said that the central government will respect the Supreme Court's decision to put farm laws on hold.

"The national flag and a holy day like Republic Day were insulted in the past few days. The Constitution that provides us Freedom of Expression, is the same Constitution that teaches us that law and rules have to be followed seriously," said President Kovind.

"Small and marginal farmers are also a priority for my government. To support such farmers in their small expenses, around Rs 1,13,000 crores have been transferred directly to their accounts, under PM-Kisan Samman Nidhi," President Kovind added.

Violence had erupted in parts of Delhi during farmers' tractor rally on Republic Day. The farmers even entered the Red Fort premises and hoisted their flags on the ramparts there. Following the violence, the Delhi Police registered several cases and issued a Lookout Notice to over 20 farmer leaders, including Punjabi actor Deep Sidhu and gangster-turned-social activist Lakha Sidhana.

President Kovind hails COVID-19 vaccination drive, lauds Centre for 'timely decision'

President Kovind on Friday also hailed COVID-19 vaccination drive in India and said that it is a matter of pride for the country that it is running the biggest inoculation programme in the world.

He also lauded the government's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, saying Centre' "timely decision" saved lakhs of lives in India. The President also tribute to those who succumbed due to the virus, including former President Pranab Mukherjee.

"Joint sitting of Parliament amid Corona pandemic is essential. It's a new year, a new decade and we are also entering into the 75th year of independence. Today all MPs are present here with message and trust that however tough be the challenge neither we nor India will stop," he said.

President Kovind pays tributes to Galwan Valley martyrs

President Kovind also paid tributes to Galwan Valley martyrs and said that the central government is committed to the interests of the country.

Speaking about the increasing tensions at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh, the President said that additional troops have been deployed in the region to keep a "check on the enemy".

President hails revocation of Article 370

The President also hailed government's decision to revoke Article 370 from Jammua and Kashmir and said that the decision was welcomed by the people there.

"Only a few weeks ago, for the first time since independence, the Zilla Parishad elections in Jammu and Kashmir have concluded successfully," he said.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma