Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday urged voters in Uttar Pradesh to vote for his Bharatiya Janata Party in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections and ensure a strong government at the Centre. Modi made the pitch towards the end of a speech in Jhansi, hours after the BJP said it was cancelling all political events in the wake of the Pulwama terror attack.

Modi’s speech was made at a government event to lay the foundation stone for schemes worth over Rs 20,000 crore.

Modi credited the state and its voters for helping bring to power a majority government in 2014 after three decades. He said his government would live up to the promise of “sabka saath, sabka vikas” and continue to ensure progress for all sections of the society.

“Voters in Uttar Pradesh have changed India’s destiny,” Modi said. “In 2014, they gave new hope to a nation that was disappointed for 30 years. This state has shown what a strong government means, how it benefits each citizen, how it gives glory on the international stage.”

On Friday morning, BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra had said: “We [BJP] have cancelled all political programmes of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Amit Shah at Odisha and Chhattisgarh.”

Modi inaugurates projects

After inaugurating a Rs 20,000-crore defence corridor in Jhansi, Modi said: “These projects will give a new dimension to the development of Bundelkhand region which would be done on the lines of Kutch in Gujarat.”

Modi said the defence corridor on the Jhansi-Agra stretch will create a lot of jobs for youth of the region. “Many foreign and domestic defence-related companies will invest in this region,” said Modi, adding that the corridor will help to make the country self-reliant in defence production. “They would impart skill development to the workforce in this region.”

Modi inaugurated a piped water supply scheme, worth Rs 9,000 crore, which will ensure drinking water to Jhansi and Chitrakoot Dham divisions. He added that the Amrit Yojna, set up at a cost of Rs 600 crore for Jhansi and its surrounding villages, and the Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojna will benefit 95% farmers in the state.

The prime minister also laid the foundation stone of a coach refurbishing workshop spread over around 135 acres in Jhansi.