Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday criticised the Congress for not allowing the Gujarat government in 2013 to help with the reconstruction of the temple town of Kedarnath after it was devastated by flash floods, the Hindustan Times reported. The prime minister is on his second visit to Kedarnath in six months.
“When floods of 2013 occurred I was not PM, I was Gujarat CM,” Modi was quoted as saying by ANI. “I offered to help in rebuilding but Centre became nervous.” The prime minister claimed that Vijay Bahuguna, who was the chief minister of Uttarakhand at that time, had agreed to his proposal but bowed to the pressure from the Centre, the Hindustan Times report said.
The prime minister laid the foundation for five projects worth Rs 150 crore. “Now through the development we are doing in Kedarnath, we want to show how an ideal “tirth kshetra” [place of pilgrimage] should be,” he said, promising that the pace of reconstruction would be faster.
Modi also performed the “rudrabhisekh” ritual before addressing a gathering at the shrine, where he thanked the people for electing the Bharatiya Janata Party in the Assembly election held earlier this year.