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In my Mother’s life story, I see the penance, sacrifice and contribution of India’s matrushakti: PM

In June this year, PM Narendra Modi wrote a blog on the occasion of his mother’s birthday, paying tribute to her remarkable life and indomitable spirit. Excerpts:

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.

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. 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 even go to school and learn to read and write. Her childhood was one of poverty and deprivation.

Mother did not have much of a childhood due to these struggles - she was forced to grow beyond her age. She was the eldest child in her family and became the eldest daughter-in-law after marriage. In her childhood, she used to take care of the entire family and manage all the chores. After marriage too, she picked up all these responsibilities. Despite the onerous responsibilities and everyday struggles, Mother held the entire family together with calm and fortitude. In Vadnagar, our family used stay in a tiny house which did not even have a window, let alone a luxury like a toilet or a bathroom. We used to call this one-room tenement with mud walls and clay tiles for a roof, our home. And all of us - my parents, my siblings and I, stayed in it.

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