Monday, Jun 24, 2019 | Last Update : 10:40 PM IST

PM: 2019 choice between ‘majboor and majboot’ govt

Published : Jan 13, 2019, 1:29 am IST
Updated : Jan 13, 2019, 1:29 am IST

Hitting back at Mr Modi for his remarks, the Congress said the fight in the upcoming general elections will be between dictatorship and democracy.

PM Narendra Modi addresses the BJP national convention at Ramlila Maidan in New Delhi. (Photo: Biplab Banerjee)
 PM Narendra Modi addresses the BJP national convention at Ramlila Maidan in New Delhi. (Photo: Biplab Banerjee)

New Delhi: Dismissing efforts by Opposition parties to stitch up a grand alliance ahead of the coming Lok Sabha elections as “Indian political history’s failed attempt,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said political outfits which were forged to challenge the Congress have surrendered before it and for the first time political parties are making efforts to come together not over a common vision but against one man (Mr Modi).

In his valedictory remarks on the concluding day of the national council of the BJP at Ramlila Maidan in New Delhi, which has launched the “NaMo Again” campaign, Mr Modi said the Opposition parties are making efforts to form a “majboor” (incapable) government to continue their corrupt deals and favour their relatives and friends, while what the nation wants is a “majboot” (strong) government. Mr Modi asserted that the NDA government has fulfilled its poll promise of “Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas” and “Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat” (development of all regions). He also raised the Ram Mandir issue but only to blame the Congress for creating hurdles in the path of resolution of the legal case.

Hitting back at Mr Modi for his remarks, the Congress said the fight in the upcoming general elections will be between dictatorship and democracy.

Addressing a press conference at the party office here, senior Congress leader Manish Tewari said, “The fight for Lok Sabha polls will be between dictatorship and democracy.”

Invoking Swami Vivekananda’s mantra of “Arise, awake and stop not till the goal is reached” before the party cadre, Mr Modi said the coming electoral battle will be between those favouring the “sultanat” (dynasty) and those who have faith in the “Samvidhan” (the Constitution), adding that the country will choose its next “pradhan sevak” between an honest, hard working hard man and those who are on vacation when needed at home and are corrupt. He claimed that the NDA government remains untainted and the country is moving towards righteousness and the party leaders should highlight this.

“We want a strong government so that we can put an end to corruption. These days a failed experiment is taking place in the country, which is known as the grand alliance. They have all gathered together to make a helpless government. They don’t want a strong government which will lead to shutting down their shops,” Mr Modi said. His comments came on a day when regional satraps, Akhilesh Yadav of the SP and Mayawati of the BSP, announced a pre-poll alliance for the Lok Sabha polls.

In his address, Mr Modi not only highlighted his government’s achievements and the measures taken for the youth, including the recent 10 per cent reservation for the general category, farmers, to strengthen the economy, but also delved into the party’s core issue of Ram Mandir, though only to the point of criticising the Congress for impeding the judicial process through its lawyers and considering bringing an impeachment motion against the then Chief Justice of India, Deepak Misra, who was heading the Supreme Court bench hearing the case.

Earlier, BJP president Amit Shah asked the party cadre not to lose morale over the losses in recent Assembly polls in Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh and Rajasthan and asserted that the Opposition might have won, but the saffron party has not lost ground. Mr Shah held the Congress responsible for the “three ulcers — casteism, nepotism and appeasement — afflicting the country’s political system” which he said had “weakened” democracy and halted development.

In his speech, Mr Modi tried to negate the Oppositions’ allegation that the BJP is a “one-man show” by talking about the collective leadership of the saffron party since its inception, which he credited for the party’s current political position. He said he himself is a “product of the organisation”. “Collective leadership and efforts of leaders like Atal ji, Advani ji, Kushabhau, Bhandari ji has brought our party this far,” h said.

Mr Modi also cautioned the party cadre against any complacency and to campaign like farmers work at their land and not to get swayed by statements like “Modi aayega to sab theek ho jayega… Modi aayega to jeet jayenge.”

“Mera Booth Sabse Majboot, should be our mantra for victory,” he said.

On the 10 per cent reservation for the general category, Mr Modi repeatedly asserted that the measure to give new dimension to the youth and strengthen the confidence of “New India” has in no way affected the existing reservation system as given in the Constitution, and formulated by Bhimrao Ambedkar. He said propaganda is being spread but the new legislation is not going to hamper or steal the right of anyone.

On the issue of farmers’ distress, Mr Modi said that earlier governments had treated them as a vote bank, but the BJP-led NDA government is sincerely working to resolve their problems. He claimed that problems faced by the farming sector were due to neglect by previous governments who believed in “shortcuts”.

“The annadata (provider of food) was turned into a mattdata (voter). We are making sincere efforts to empower them. We want to make farmers the carriers of new energy of a new India,” he said and alleged that the demand to provide farmers a minimum support price (MSP) 1.5 times the production cost was buried in files earlier.

Mr Modi claimed that his government procured 95 metric tonnes of pulses during 4.5 years of its rule, compared to only 7 metric tonnes of pulses and oilseeds procured by the previous dispensation in five years. He did admit, however, that there remain some issues that need to be resolved, like agriculture loan, but “bigger the problem, even bigger is the solution.”

Mr Modi slammed Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal and Chhattisgarh governments for withdrawing general consent to the CBI in their respective state, and asked what were they afraid of.

Keeping up his tirade against the Congress, Mr Modi recalled how as the chief minister of Gujarat, the then Congress-led UPA misused every agency to trouble him, and a senior central Congress leader had in 2007 publicly claimed that they would send him to jail.

“We also had a government… we could had done the same (barred the CBI), but we had faith in the judiciary,” the PM said and alleged that the Congress feels that it is above all institutions. He also cited the National Herald case and said despite summons by many agencies, the “Congress’ first family” failed to appear before them and compared how as the Gujarat chief minister he had sat before the SIT for nine hours.       

“Despite being harassed by the UPA for years, I didn’t ban entry of CBI in the state... We believed in law. We had faith in truth... these (Congress) leaders on bail have no trust either in law or in truth... Can they (Congress) be trusted with power?,” he asked and blamed it for the crisis in banks, saying that there was a “common process” and a “Congress process” of loans when it was in power.

Taking an apparent dig at the Congress president over the Rafale issue, Mr Modi cited the speech of a BJP MP in Parliament and said, “One can awaken someone who is sleeping, but not someone who is pretending to sleep.” Mr Modi said a foreign middleman was brought to India over corruption issue in arms deal during the NDA’s, rule but the Opposition is now using its “ecosystem” to create conspiracies over the issue because of inconvenient revelations. 

Tags: narendra modi, 2019 lok sabha polls
Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi