Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday invoked former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee and LK Advani, the Bharatiya Janata Party veteran, among other on the foundation day of the party to assert that return of his government in the Lok Sabha election “will make India stronger”.
PM Modi said, “The BJP was founded 39 years ago on this day with a commitment…Vajpayee used to say a BJP worker should have one foot in rail and one in jail for the progress of the party and the country…Today, the BJP has provided an alternative to the Congress for India.”
In his speech, PM Modi expressed his “gratitude” to Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi among other party leaders. Both Advani and Joshi are not among the candidates the BJP has fielded in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. Reports suggested that the two veteran leaders were not happy with the manner in which the BJP leadership took the decision to deny them the poll ticket.
The prime minister referred to a strike by the Indian Air Force at a terror camp in Pakistan’s Balakot in February this year and also spoke about surgical strike by the special commandos in 2016 to buttress his government’s claim of taking decisive action against terrorism “unlike the previous governments”.
The Balakot strike was carried out in the aftermath of the Pulwama terror attack in which 40 CRPF soldiers were killed. The surgical strike was conducted after terror attack at Uri base camp of the Indian Army.
Addressing a public rally in Odisha’s Sundergarh, PM Modi said, “India now enters the homes of terrorists and eliminate them. The governments were there earlier also but no one could think of a surgical strike. The governments were there earlier also but no one thought of crossing the borders to strike at terrorists.”
“For a strong India, should not there be a strong BJP,” the prime minister asked his election rally while exhorting the BJP workers to “put everything during the times of polls” in Odisha.
PM Modi targeted both the Congress and the Biju Janata Dal, the ruling party in Odisha saying that these two parties were responsible for the backwardness of the state. “Odisha is not backward. People are very hardworking here but the parties that have ruled the state have not done justice to the people,” PM Modi said.
In his speech, he said that this was the first visit of an Indian prime minister to Sundergarh. Odisha will be voting for both the Lok Sabha and assembly elections simultaneously in four phases between April 11 and April 29. The BJP has emerged as the principal challenger to the BJD government of Naveen Patnaik in Odisha.
Apr 06, 2021 12:20 IST