BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi Sunday compared the growth of Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh two states formed in the same year to attack the Congress. He said while the people of Jharkhand remained poor despite the state being rich in natural resources,BJP-ruled Chhattisgarh has sped ahead on the path of development.
Addressing a public rally here,his first after getting a clean chit from an Ahmedabad court in a 2002 Gujarat riots conspiracy case,Modi said,Why is Jharkhand still poor and poverty is growing,although it is rich in resources?
It was former prime minister A B Vajpayee who understood the aspirations and dreams of the people of the region and created the state (Jharkhand) along with Uttarakhand and Chhattisgarh. The new state was created for progress,but why has it not happened in 13 years? Chhattisgarh has been a success because the people there have been endorsing the BJP and its development policies,he said,while Jharkhand has suffered due to political instability.
With a poster of Parliament building as the backdrop on the stage,unlike the Red Fort that was used at two previous rallies,Modi appealed to the people to help the BJP sweep the 14 Lok Sabha seats from Jharkhand so that their aspirations could be fulfilled. Accusing the Congress at the Centre of ignoring Jharkhands demands,he said when the BJP comes to power it would extend all necessary help to eradicate poverty and create jobs to halt migration of youth.
BJP president Rajnath Singh,in his speech,blamed political instability in the state for the lack of development. He advocated a rise in the strength of the Assembly from the current 81 seats to 150.
Attacking the Congress,Modi told the impressive gathering,The 2014 elections is going to be a popular movement against misgovernance and in favour of good governance. We will move ahead with development.
Modi yet again ridiculed his favourite whipping boy Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi for his recent directive to Congress chief ministers to control price rise. He said Rahuls akaashvani was meant to befool the people.
You must have heard about akaashvani in our old scriptures. It is being replayed these days. Those who are actually responsible for the current plight have turned into making akaashvani. They hide after their akaashvani. The akaashvani in scriptures used to force people into introspection,but this akaashvani demonstrates their dishonesty, he said.
He said that as the chairman of group of chief ministers constituted by the Prime Minister,he had given suggestions to curb price rise through specific measures more than two years ago. But the government did not take any action on those suggestions, Modi said,dismissing Rahuls directive to the Congress CMs as a gimmick.
However,in a departure from his usual Vande Mataram sloganeering at the end of his rallies,Modi chose to skip the ritual this time,perhaps with the subdued response from the crowd playing on his mind.
While Modi preferred to keep silent on the court verdict,Rajnath Singh highlighted the clean chit to Modi,asserting that he will emerge stronger than ever. He was being labelled as communal for the only riots that happened in 12 years of his rule (in Gujarat). There was delay,but gods have delivered justice in his favour. An Ahmedabad court has given clean chit to him, Singh said.
They (Congress) have now resorted to a fresh trick,accusing Narendra Modi of snooping. Modi has constituted an inquiry commission,but the Central government has set up a parallel commission. The more you (Congress) try to conspire against him,Narendra Modi will emerge stronger, the BJP chief said.
On rising prices,he said Modi was capable of controlling them. The Prime Minister laments that he has no magic wand to control prices. But Vajpayee had kept prices under control during his six-year rule. Vajpayee has passed on that magic wand to our future prime minister Narendra Modi to contain inflation, he said.
While Modi did not speak about the challenge of Naxalism in the state,Singh appealed to Naxal brothers to shun bullets and take up ballot for the change they want.
Other senior leaders projected Modi as the strongman the country needs. Raising the issue of US visa denial to Modi,former union minister Yashwant Sinha said,Either Barack Obama come here to personally hand over US visa to him,otherwise we (BJP) will cancel his visa to India.
Former chief minister Arjun Munda attacked the Congress for being soft on Pakistan. The situation has become such that Indian soldiers are being beheaded at the border. When Narendra Modi becomes the PM,the country will retaliate by beheading 100 (Pakistani soldiers) for each of our (soldier) beheaded to restore Indian pride, he said.