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The BJP’s PM candidate Shri Narendra Modi on Sunday addressed a ‘Fateh’ (victory) Rally at Jagraon, Ludhiana with leaders from the ally Shiromani Akali Dal on the dais. At the onset Modi ji dismissed as ‘rumors and a pack of lies’ the controversy about migration of Sikh farmers from Kutch region in his State: “There is a conspiracy to mislead the people of Punjab about the condition of Sikhs living in Gujarat. Every Sikh in Gujarat is happy. No Sikh farmer will ever leave Gujarat….. If any officer does anything wrong he will go but no Sikh will be displaced from Gujarat….. The people who are misguiding on the issue are posing a threat to the country……the entire country is one”.
The Gujarat-Punjab ties, he recalled, go back to the time of the first Panj Piaras, where one of the Panj Piara was a tailor from Gujarat; this amounts to a blood relationship, he insisted, “adarshon ka rishta bana hua hai”. Professing his love for Punjab and its people, Modiji said that music and food of the state is a favorite in Gujarat as well. Modi ji mentioned that both Punjabis and Gujaratis are moving on the path of development and living together in many countries. Shri Modi described the BJP-SAD alliance in Punjab as a symbol of Hindu-Sikh unity which has put to end the ‘Congress’ game of divide and rule’.
Talking about the NDA alliance’s governance Modi said, “We enter into poll fray as National Democratic Alliance, but after coming to power we go as National Development Alliance.”
On the occasion the BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate questioned the Congress for targeting other parties on corruption: “I am surprised that the leader of Congress is now engaged in raising fingers on other political parties on the issue of corruption, when the entire ABCD has become the identity of the corruption of Congress. When Rajiv Gandhi was ruling the country as Prime Minister, there was no other party but only Congress, which was in power from Parliament to Panchayat…At that time he had said that when he sends a rupee from Delhi, only 15 paisas reach the village. What was this ‘Panja’ which used to rub the rupee and it would turn into 15 paisa,”
Modiji vowed that if he is elected Prime Minister he will occupy the top seat as a ‘chowkidar’ and won’t allow the ‘Panja’ (hand) to cast its shadow on the State treasury. Modi ji wondered why the Government did not bring the one-rank, one-pension issue in previous budgets even as it was in power for last ten years:
“After Rahul Gandhi’s push, the Government accepted the long-standing demand of ex-servicemen for ‘one-rank, one-pension’ and allocated Rs 500 crore for the fund a few days back. This decision is expected to benefit around 30 lakh retired personnel of the Armed forces. The Government, which is sitting in Delhi, has always been playing a farce with the Armed Forces. Before this also, a number of times, the Finance Minister of Congress had made announcements about One Rank One Pension (OROP) but never fulfilled it.”
Restating BJP’s commitment to this long pending demand of military veterans, Shri Narendra Modi said that Atal ji would have done it if only the BJP had returned to power in 2004. He promised to implement it if the BJP came to power in the coming general election, “only nationalists can do it, and so we will do it”. Accusing Congress of cheating people, Modiji said, “Now since they felt that you have become aware,they have engaged in throwing pepper in Parliament. Those, who used to throw dust, are now throwing pepper so that people fail to see the sins and the bad governance of Congress.”
Shri Modi praised the balanced growth model in Punjab, where Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal focuses upon the farmers’ well-being and Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal promotes industry.As part of this twin model, the Punjab Government recently invited top industrialists to invest in the State, and also organized a massive Krishi Mela to promote the modernization of agriculture. Here Shri Narendra Modi mooted his three-fold model of development, wherein one-third of the economy should comprise of agriculture, the manufacturing should comprise another one-third, and the service sector should make up the rest.
Modi ji charged that far from working to increase the income of farmers, the Government of India, announces the minimum support price for food grains which remained on paper only, and large amounts of the farmers’ produce rots without proper storage. Seeing this dismal situation, the Supreme Court had advised the UPA to distribute the inadequately stored grain among the poor, but the Centre ignored the suggestion and instead sold the rotting grain to alcohol manufacturers at throwaway prices; “this is an insult to the poor”, he said.
Shri Modi expressed appreciation for the great political leaders like Shri Parkash Singh Badal, Shri Bansi Lal, Shri Devi Lal and Shri Farooq Abdullah, with whom he had interacted as a party leader, and their examples helped him when entrusted with the political responsibility for Gujarat. Modi ji reminded the crowd that it was Parkash Singh Badal who recalled the sterling contributions of Lala Lajpat Rai, who hailed from Ludhiana, and who is ignored by the Congress: “For Congress only Gandhi family is making sacrifices for the country,”.
Shri Modi on being offered a ‘turban’ at the rally, vowed he will keep the sanctity of turban at all cost: “My responsibility is to keep the respect of turban intact…I will fulfill the responsibility of tradition of sacrifice…the country will flourish and all will be satisfied,”
Speaking on the occasion, Shri Parkash Singh Badal said that the country today is facing both internal and external threats. He appreciated former Prime Minister Vajpayee ji for giving Punjab a refinery when other Governments ignored the State. Badal ji stressed the need to wage a war against corruption, unemployment and poverty stating corruption and Congress as two sides of a single coin. He also claimed the only policy of the Congress is to divide and rule.
Badal ji called Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi a learner in politics and that by sensing the political mood of the country, it is an assured verdict that Modi will become the next PM of the country.