Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday called the upcoming election in Himachal Pradesh a “one-sided contest” and said the Congress has run away from the battlefield fearing voters would “teach them a lesson”.

“I am really sad about one thing in this election, that Congress has left the battlefield already,” ANI quoted Modi as saying in Una. Himachal Pradesh will go to the polls on November 9, and the results will be announced on December 18.

Modi addressed rallies in Una and Palampur and Kullu on Sunday. At Una, Modi said many of the remaining problems with the Goods and Services Tax would be addressed in this week’s meeting of the GST Council. He also blamed the state governments for the delay in providing relief to the traders who have complained of hurdles in the new tax system.

He said some states were led by governments of other parties, and they did not allow consensus to be reached.

Modi said the Centre’s demonetisation drive curbed the finances of militant outfits in Jammu and Kashmir, and claimed it helped reduce stone pelting incidents at the Indian Army jawans in the state. He also said that the Opposition was planning a Black Money Day on November 8 – the first anniversary of demonetisation – because it wanted to put pressure on his government so that it doesn’t take any more strong steps against black money.

At Palampur, Modi hit out at the Congress once again, accusing the party of not looking after the welfare of the people. “It has never been a priority for the Congress party,” he said, and added that on December 18 (results day), “Himachal will celebrate diwali again”.

Modi ended his Himachal rally at Kulu on Sunday evening, saying the upcoming elections were being fought by the people of the state who have “decided to make the BJP win and punish the Congress”.