Prime Minister Narendra Modi will present a new outline for a self-reliant India in his address to the nation from the ramparts of the Red Fort on August 15, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Sunday.

The defense minister said various departments and ministries of the government are working seriously to implement Modi’s initiative for a self-reliant India and that it is an attempt to give a fresh dimension to Mahatma Gandhi’s push for ‘Swadeshi’.

Singh was speaking at an online event organized to pay tributes to revolutionary freedom fighter Udham Singh.

Talking about the ‘Atmanirbhar’ initiative, the defense minister said that the coronavirus pandemic has shown that a country may not be able to effectively protect its sovereignty if it is not self-reliant.

“Our government will not allow any harm to India’s self-respect and sovereignty at any cost,” he said.

“Prime Minister Narendra Modi will present before the nation a new outline for a self-reliant India in his address from the ramparts of the Red Fort on Independence Day,” Singh said.

Referring to the defense ministry’s decision to ban the import of 101 military weapons and platforms, Singh said major and tough decisions are being taken to promote self-reliance in defense production.

He said big weapons systems will now be produced in India and the country will look for their export to make it a hub for defense manufacturing.

In a major push to promote the domestic defense industry, Singh on Sunday morning announced restrictions on import of 101 weapons and military platforms including light combat helicopters, transport aircraft, conventional submarines, and cruise missiles by 2024.

Meanwhile, India’s COVID-19 tally reached 21,53,011 today, with 64,399 cases being reported in a day. Recoveries rose to 14,80,885 according to the Union Health Ministry data. hours. The total number of deaths from COVID-19 rose to 43,379. This is the third consecutive day that the COVID-19 cases have increased by more than 60,000. India had crossed the 20-lakh mark on Friday. As many as 7,19,364 samples were tested on Saturday, the highest in a day so far. A total of 2,41,06,535 samples have been tested so far, according to the Indian Council of Medical Research.