Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday asked students to follow the fundamental duties enshrined in the Indian Constitution, reported The Indian Express. “There’s a fine connection between our rights and responsibilities,” he said at his ‘Pariksha Pe Charcha’ programme with 2,000 students, parents and teachers from across the country. “Our rights are directly dependent on the responsibilities performed by others. I hope this generation takes it upon themselves to act on some of the Fundamental Duties enshrined in our Constitution.”

The third edition of Pariksha Pe Charcha is being organised at Talkatora Indoor Stadium in Delhi. More than 1,000 students attending the event have been selected through short essays on five topics. The students who will get to ask questions to the prime minister have been short-listed on the basis of essays submitted by them on five subjects – Gratitude is Great, Your Future Depends on Your Aspirations, Examining Exams, Our Duties, Your Take, and Balance is Beneficial, reported News18.

Modi urged the students to promote ‘Make in India’ to boost the economy. “Can we decide that by 2022, we will all buy everything that’s India-made?” he asked the students. “This will strengthen our country. We shouldn’t let water flow needlessly. We mustn’t use electricity more than we need. We must not travel without tickets on trains. There are a lot of responsibilities that can help in the development of the entire country.”

Modi asked students to consider technology their friend and not fear it. But at the same time, he said, one must have “a technology-free hour”. He said: “Dedicate some time away from the gadgets. Encourage your parents also to do the same.”

Modi asked the students to learn from failure to become successful in life. He cited the example of the unsuccessful launch of Chandrayaan-2, India’s moon mission, last year. “Some people advised me against going to Chandrayaan mission launch saying ‘there is no surety’, ‘what if it fails?’,” he said. “I said that is precisely why I should go there. Even I was disturbed by the failure of Chandrayaan-2, but then I went to talk to the scientists and motivated them. I expressed my feelings and praised their hard work and about nation’s dreams. The mood changed, not just there, but across the country. What happened after that, you all know. Sometimes you can learn from failure.”

He also spoke about the 2001 India-Australia match in Kolkata where spinner Anil Kumble was injured but he still played and won the match. Modi said that it depends on us how we deal with the troubles. He also cited the examples of Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman. “Our team was facing setbacks and the mood wasn’t great,” he remembered. “But, we can never forget how Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman turned the match around. This is power of positive thinking and motivation.”

To the parents and teachers, the prime minister asked them to allow the students to “pursue and not pressure”. “Every parent/teacher must think about how they behaved with the children when they were about 4-5 years old,” said Modi. “You didn’t pressurise them, you just motivated them. I want parents to accept that their children have grown up, but they must understand that their psyche to help them must never change or go away. Parents who allow their children to pursue things [if they are on the right track] are doing right thing.” He also asked them to encourage children to pursue co-curricular activities. “What is not good is when the passion of the children becomes fashion statements for parents,” he said. “Extra-curricular activities needn’t be glamour driven. Let each child pursue what he or she likes.”