Targeting Nitish Kumar, BJP Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi on Thursday alleged that the Bihar Chief Minister had failed to prevent the terrorist attack at Bodh Gaya last year because of ‘vote bank’ politics.
“Log mare to mare unko chinta thi apni kursi ki apne vote bank ki (let the people die, he was more concerned about his chair and vote bank politics),” Modi told an election meeting at the Gandhi Maidan here.
The holy city of Bodh Gaya, he said, was rocked by serial bomb blasts triggered by terrorists in July last year, but the state government did little to prevent it.
With new ally LJP chief Ramvilas Paswan and former Bihar deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi on the dais, Modi claimed that tourists visiting Bodh Gaya had declined because of the terror incident.
He also held the UPA government responsible for the scourge of terrorism “growing” in the country and said it did not have the will to fight it.
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The rally witnessed chaos when a large crowd of people broke barricades to enter the media enclosure the moment Modi arrived on the dais.
The situation was brought to control after a mild lathi-charge and appeal from leaders on the stage.
He also criticised the previous state governments in Bihar and questioned why a dam in Latehar in Jharkhand started in 1975 had yet not been completed.
Modi also rubbished the Congress election manifesto and asked the ruling party to first give account of promises made in 2009 before making new promises.
The Congress manifesto promised creating jobs for 10 crore people, he said and asked whether party whose approach was for promoting ‘jobless growth’ could be believed.
He also berated the promise of creating rural courts in the manifesto, saying out of 5000 promised last time only 152 were set up so far.
Taking potshots at the Congress on the issue of anti-corruption legislation and bringing black money back to the country, he asked, “Can they be believed?” he asked.
Modi said tourism industry in Bihar has been hit due to terror blasts in Bodhgaya, a holy Buddhist city, causing lack of employment.
He targeted the JD(U) government as well as the Centre while promising people to provide development and prosperity if voted to power.
“In Bodhgaya, the numbers of foreign tourists decreased after bomb blasts. Whose loss is this? The chairs of those who do vote-bank politics might have been saved but the people’s employment has been snatched. That is why terrorism is a big threat to country.
“Those doing vote-bank politics for their own selfish ends have nurtured it, have given it refuge… Terrorism divides, tourism unites,” he said.
They have, he said, only one concern and this is to save their chair even if people die and terrorism spreads, he said, adding that such people have “destroyed” Bihar and the country.
Accusing the state and Union governments of not being interested in the progress of the region, he referred to the expenditure of Rs 800 cr on a dam, work on which started in 1975 and has been stalled by the Union environment ministry.
If completed, it would have benefited 25 lakh farmers.
He took a dig at Congress’ claim that it passed Acts to secure people’s rights and equated it with the tale of a hunter who when accosted by a tiger showed the beast the license of his gun.
“The government in Delhi says I give this right, that right… But where is the action,” he said.