New Delhi: Enthusiastic people cheered, applauded and whistled as Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivered his over an hour-long maiden Independence Day speech.
As soon as Modi's cavalcade reached Red Fort, the atmosphere turned electric. When he got down and waved to the cheering crowd, many of them stood on their chair to get a glimpse of the leader.
On his left were over 10,000 people who had been allowed to witness the address live for the first time and on Modi's right and in the front were the thousands of school children, mainly from government schools between the ages of 10 to 16 years.
And the response was equally enthusiastic from all quarters, irrespective of age and social background.
When Modi joked, they laughed and when he talked about improving the country's infrastructure, they applauded.
All through his speech, the sounds of cheering, hooting, clapping and whistling reverberated in the air.
"This is the first time that I have come to the Red Fort to listen to the PM and all because I admire Modi and his ideas," Kulraj Singh, a 32-year-old resident of nearby Darya Ganj said.
Aarti Upadhyay, 40, a homemaker from east Delhi's Geeta Colony, who too had for the first time heard a speech live by a prime minister, said: "It was my dream to see Modiji unfurl the tricolour. I know he will take the country in the right direction. His speech was perfect."
Such was the enthusiasm, that groups of youngsters could be seen chanting 'Vande Mataram' and 'Bharat Mata ki Jai' a kilometre away as they walked towards the ground.
It was good to see that some of the suggestions Modi gave in his speech - particularly about keeping cities clean - was adhered to by the school children.