Assembly elections

‘BJP was doing relief work, Congress resort work’: Modi criticises Opposition in Gujarat

The prime minister said that those who did not stand with the people during the floods cannot be expected to serve the state.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday accused the Congress lawmakers in Gujarat of relaxing in resorts while leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party were helping with relief operations after floods hit the state.

“The people of Patan and Banaskantha know the difference between the Congress and the BJP,” Modi said at an election rally in Banaskantha district in the northern part of the state. “The BJP was doing relief work, Congress was busy with resort work.” Those who did not stand with the people of Banaskantha during bad times cannot be expected to serve either the district or the state, the prime minister added.

Modi alleged that after he became prime minister in 2014, Aiyar had travelled to Pakistan to get him “removed” to improve relations between the two countries. Modi said the Congress had then tried to muffle the episode, and did not take any action against Aiyar.

“Mr Mani Shankar Aiyar told people when he visited Pakistan that remove Modi from the way and then see what will happen to India-Pakistan peace,” the prime minister said. “What did he mean by removing me from the way? And is having the blessings of the people my crime?”

Reiterating his claim that Indira Gandhi held a handkerchief to her nose when she visited the city of Morbi, Modi said the difference between the Congress and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh was for everyone to see. “RSS and Jan Sangh did everything possible and stood shoulder to shoulder with [the] people,” Modi said.

The prime minister also spoke of how the BJP government helped the district make rapid progress in utilising solar energy, and the improved irrigation facilities in Banaskantha. “Earlier, people from here would have to travel a considerable distance to pray to Maa Narmada,” Modi said. “Due to the BJP, Narmada waters have come to this region and Maa Narmada is blessing us all.”

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