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In Dehradun, PM Modi targets Congress over J&K’s AFSPA issue

Modi slammed National Conference chief Omar Abdullah and said that the Congress supporters in Kashmir want a separate prime minister for J&K. "The Congress wants to repeal AFSPA to help such people in Kashmir," he said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi gestures as he speaks during an election rally, ahead of the Lok Sabha polls. (PTI)

Targetting opposition during an election rally in Dehradun of Uttarakhand on Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the Congress and corruption go together. The PM alleged the involvement of party leaders in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper case.

“Congress and corruption go together. They can never be separated. Corruption needs Congress, and Congress needs corruption. In a Congress government corruption is on the accelerator and development on the ventilator — this is the identity of the Congress government… Whether it be 2G scam, coal scam, Commonwealth scam, from the earth to the skies, there is nothing that has escaped their loot,” he said.

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“Your Chowkidar (watchman)”, Modi said referring to himself, “had brought back from Dubai those who were accused in a helicopter scam. The concerned agencies questioned Italy’s (Christian) Michel mama (uncle) and other middlemen in connection with the case for many weeks, based on which a charge-sheet has been filed in the court.” Modi further added that he saw in the media, that the people to be bribed in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal by the middlemen of the “helicopter scam” are “AP and FAM”. “The charge-sheet says that AP stands for Ahmed Patel, and FAM stands for Family… Ahmed Patel is quite close to the former (Uttarakhand) chief minister (Harish Rawat). And which family is Ahmed Patel close to, you know it”, he said.

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Speaking on the issue of national security, which is of importance to Uttarakhand whose large population serves in the Armed Forces, he said that the Congress has started “a campaign” in favour of anti-nationals, and Pakistan. The Congress manifesto for the upcoming polls states that if voted to power, the party would “amend the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 in order to strike a balance between the powers of security forces and the human rights of citizens and to remove immunity for enforced disappearance, sexual violence and torture”.

The prime minister called the Congress manifesto a “dhakosla patra (sham)”, adding, “by saying in its dhakosla patra that it will repeal the law (AFSPA) that protects the Army and the para-military personnel who protect our borders, the Congress has favoured the terrorists, separatists, and stone-pelters in Jammu and Kashmir. They are doing this for votes — putting the lives of our jawans at stake.”

“The Congress wants to break the morale of the people protecting our borders,” he further said. “Chowkidar chalega ya aatankwadiyon ke madadgaar chalenge (Will a Chowkidar work for you or the people helping the terrorists)?” Modi asked the crowd.

“Chowkidar,’ the crowd responded.

Modi also slammed National Conference chief Omar Abdullah and said that the Congress supporters in Kashmir want a separate prime minister for J&K. “The Congress wants to repeal AFSPA to help such people in Kashmir,” he said.

First published on: 05-04-2019 at 21:55 IST
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