Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said Bharatiya Janata Party President Amit Shah was the “Man of the Match” during the Assembly election held in Uttar Pradesh this year. He praised Shah for taking the BJP to new heights.

“When the BJP saw a resounding victory in the Assembly election in Uttar Pradesh this year, it stunned the entire nation,” Modi said. “ I had said at that time that Amit Shah was the ‘man of the match’ of this election. After the results, political analysts advised the Opposition to focus on the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, instead of the one in 2019.”

Modi and Shah addressed party workers in Gandhinagar on the last day of the party’s Gujarat Gaurav Yatra.

Modi criticises Congress

Without referring to the Congress, Modi said the party had mistreated Gujarat leader Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, his daughter Maniben Patel and former Prime Minister Morarji Desai. He said the Congress had deliberately not completed the Sardar Sarovar Project. “Gujarat has always been a thorn in the eyes for ‘that family’ and their party,” the prime minister said.

The Prime Minister said the Congress has given the country a number of chief ministers and leaders, but it has now turned its focus only on spreading lies. “The Congress has lost the ability to think positively,” the prime minister said. “The party has been raking up all negative issues in order to win the elections.”

The Congress must refrain from “spreading lies” on the Goods and Services Tax, Modi said while adding that he or his government was not alone in the decision-making process. “All states are represented there, including the Congress. So, the party should not spread misinformation.”

Modi said the BJP was contesting the election on the development plank, but the Opposition party was competing on the basis of dynasty. “Politics of development will win, and dynasty policy will lose.”

The Congress has announced that it will observe November 8 as a “black day” to mark the first anniversary of the demonetisation drive. The prime minister said the BJP will observe the day as “anti-black money day”.

Allegations before election

Hours before Modi’s rally, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi said there would be many poll promises. “Weather report: It is going to rain promises today in Gujarat, ahead of the elections,” he said on Twitter.

Assembly elections are expected to be held in Gujarat in December. Gandhi’s statement refers to allegations from various quarters that it was suspicious that the Election Commission had decided to not announce poll dates for the Gujarat elections the same day it had announced the schedule for Himachal Pradesh.

The Congress had attacked the poll panel’s decision, alleging that the BJP government had pressured the Election Commission so that Modi could make more announcements for the people of Gujarat at his rally on Monday.