Shimla: The State Government organized Civic Reception in honour of President Ram Nath Kovind at hotel Peterhoff, here today. He was accompanied by his wife and first lady of the country Savita Kovind. He thanked the State Government and people of the State for warm welcome.

The President was honoured by the Governor and Chief Minister by presenting a memento, Himachal Cap and Shawl. The President was presented ‘Honour Citation’ (Maan Patra) by Mayor, Municipal Corporation Shimla Smt. Kusum Sadret on the occasion.

The President presented a “Brick” to Sanjeev Rana of Bilaspur for construction of Martyr Memorial under ‘Ek Eent Shaheehdon ke Naam’ pogramme.

Governor Acharya Devvrat, while welcoming the President, said that being from the humble background, the President understands the feelings and needs of the common man. He said that Himachal Pradesh was one of the most peaceful States of the Country which was fast forging on the path of development. He said that credit of this goes to the hard working and honest people of the State.

Acharya Devvrat said that we should be proud of our rich culture and tradition but due to some vested interests and several invasions, the rich cultural diversity and culture was under threat. He said that Indian tradition preaches and advocates peaceful coexistence. It was unfortunate that today our society was divided on the lines of caste and creed. He urged the youth to work towards nation building so that India could again become “Vishav Guru”.

He said that vice of drug abuse amongst youth, female feticide and lack of effective water management were the issues of concern. He also stressed on promotion of zero budget natural farming for increasing farm income and checking soil degradation.

While welcoming the President Ram Nath Kovind and his wife Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said that Himachal Pradesh apart from being known as ‘Dev Bhoomi’ was also ‘Veer Bhoomi’ as thousands of youth of the State were serving the Armed Forces with dedication and commitment. He said that the life of Ram Nath Kovind was a source of inspiration who although was born in a simple farmer family, but due to his hard work, dedication and honesty, he rose to the highest Constitutional position.

The Chief Minister said the gracious presence of the President had provided an opportunity to the people of the State to show their affection and respect to him. He said that it was the practice in the past that the President visits the State for a few days for summer retreat, but this visit of the President was a more of work and less rest. He hoped the visit of the President to the State would be memorable for him as well as his family.

Jai Ram Thakur said that being a small State, Himachal Pradesh had made rapid strides in various fields of development and was steadily forging ahead on the path of progress and prosperity. Although, the State government had just completed four months in office, but it had initiated some ambitious schemes and projects for development of the State. He said that the government was working with a motto of ‘Sabka Saath-Sabka Vikas’.

A colourful cultural programme was presented on the occasion showcasing the rich cultural diversity of all the districts of the State.

Speaker Vidhan Sabha Dr Rajiv Bindal, former Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, Ministers, Deputy Speaker, MLAs, formers Ministers and MLAs, Chief Secretary Vineet Chawdhry, DGP S.R. Mardi, senior civil, military and police officers were present on the occasion.