Kicking off election campaigning in poll-bound Gujarat, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday dared the Congress to contest the forthcoming assembly elections on the development plank, insisting that “development politics” will reign supreme over “family rule”. “These elections are about Vikasvaad versus Vanshvaad. I am sure Vanshvaad will be defeated,” Modi while addressing a massive rally organised by the state BJP to celebrate the conclusion of the saffron party’s ‘Gujarat Gaurav Yatra’ (march for Gujarat’s honour).
Launching a blistering attack on the Congress on various issues, PM Modi said that the grand old party was spreading an atmosphere of pessimism. “The (Congress) party that gave so many leaders to the nation now focus only on spreading lies. They create an atmosphere of pessimism,” the prime minister said.
Alleging that the Nehru-Gandhi family dislikes Gujarat and Gujaratis, Modi said, “The (Congress) party has always had a negative approach towards development of Gujarat. They did not even complete Sardar Sarovar project.”
Modi also rallied behind his government amid criticism over glitches in the implementation of Goods and Services Tax. “Government is actively striving to remove any issues that GST may have and thousands of new businessmen are registering for it,” he said, adding that Congress was an equal partner in GST decisions and urged it to refrain from “spreading lies” on GST.
Mounting further attacks, Modi also alleged that the Congress has always backed the corrupt and corruption and asked them to look within. “Those questioning us on development of Gujarat must recall what their contribution has been for the state’s progress,” he said. “Congress blamed us in every possible manner. But when they saw there was no impact on us, they started blaming our development works.”
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Modi also showered praises on BJP national president Amit Shah and party cadres. He even called Shah as the real man of the match in the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections held earlier this year.
A political slugfest has erupted over the Election Commission’s decision to not announce simultaneous polls in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh. The Congress alleged that if the EC had announced elections dates in Gujarat along with HP, then the model code of conduct would have come into force with immediate effect, leaving no scope for the BJP to announce any sops for people in Gujarat.
While Himachal Pradesh will go to polls on November 9 and results will be declared on December 18, Gujarat elections have not been announced as of yet. However, Chief Election Commissioner A K Joti has confirmed they will be held before December 18.
With inputs from PTI