PM Narendra Modi greets nation on Diwali

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday celebrated Diwali with soldiers near the Line of Control (LoC) in Gurez sector of north Kashmir's Bandipora district.

Accompanying Prime Minister Modi on this visit was Chief of Army Staff, General Bipin Rawat, and other senior army officers.

Reportedly, the PM will celebrate Diwali with the troops of 15 Corps in Gurez Sector tonight. Prior to this, in 2015, in the Dograi War Memorial in Amritsar, PM Modi had reached Diwali with soldiers for Diwali and in 2014 the PM spent time on Diwali with Indian soldiers deployed on Siachen glacier.

This is the second time that Modi is celebrating Diwali with troops in Kashmir after he became the PM.

In 2016, the prime minister celebrated Diwali with ITBP jawans in Himachal Pradesh.

Prime Minister Modi also appreciated the troops for regularly practicing yoga, adding that once they choose to retire, they could mould themselves into excellent yoga teachers.

A statement from his office quoted Modi as telling the troops that he gets new energy when he spends time among the soldiers.

Modi said his government is committed to the welfare and the betterment of the armed forces "in every way possible".

He also announced a Rs 570 crore package for Jammu and Kashmir, which had been hit by the worst floods in 100 years the same year.

Practising yoga will enhance your abilities, and give you a sense of calm, PM Modi told the gathered soldiers.

The festival of Diwali celebrates the victory of light over darkness, goodness over evil and justice over injustice. The presence of courageous soldiers at the border on this festive occasion lights the lamp of hope and generates new energy among crores of Indians", he said adding, "To accomplish the dream of "New India", this is a golden opportunity for all of us to work together.

The PM today took to Twitter and extended Diwali greetings to the countrymen.

This is the fourth successive Diwali Modi celebrated with soldiers. Sitharaman was in Andaman and Nicobar, where India's only tri-services command is located. Diwali, also known as Deepavali, is a major Hindu festival celebrated with much pomp across the country.

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