Mumbai BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi addressing a Maha Garjana rally in Mumbai on Sunday. | PTI
BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi today launched a scathing attack on Congress, saying those immersed in corruption are now giving "sermons" against it. "I heard the speech of a big Congress leader yesterday.
He was speaking against corruption. See their daring. No one else can dare do this. These people are so immersed in corruption. Despite this, they make innocent face and speak against corruption," Modi said at a huge public rally here.
"The Adarsh commission report has indicted ministers. On one hand, Maharashtra government decides to save the corrupt and on the other, a Congress leader is giving sermons in Delhi," he said in an apparent reference to Rahul Gandhi.
"Congress speaks one thing and does another," he said.
"Whether Congress leaders are in government or not, all things are done as per their directives. But the same people, when they make a speech, one feels as if they are speaking on behalf of some other government, for some other country," he said. "Congress is involved in divide and rule for vote bank politics. This has been their speciality. They learnt this from British," Modi said.
"While Sardar Patel united India, Congress pitted brother against brother and created states on linguistic basis," he said.
"The problems we face won't be solved till we free India from vote bank politics and get it on path of development politics," he stressed.
The reason for the problems the country faces is not our history or geography but Congress-ruled governments, he said.
"The voice of 'Congress-free India' should go out from Mumbai, which first gave the call of 'Quit India' against British rule," the Gujarat Chief Minister said.
"I wish that in 2014 elections, votes should be sought for the country and not in the name of party. We want to say, "Vote for India", to free the country of dynastic rule, corruption, inflation, bad governance and to maintain unity of the country," he said.
Minorityism and communalism have been the tradition of Congress, Modi said.
"The Manmohan Singh government selected 90 districts in the country where Muslims were in majority and announced big schemes and budget for their welfare. Muslims began to think that something good would come out of it. Media also wrote a lot," he said.
"But now, someone asked a question in Parliament about the expenditure incurred on minority welfare projects in the districts. The government told Parliament that in three years not a single rupee has been spent," he said.
"This is an example of the vote bank politics of Congress," the BJP leader said.
On the issue of black money, Modi said, "Those looting India deposit black money in Swiss banks and even a child knows this. This money should be brought back and spent for poor."
"All BJP MPs, under Advaniji's leadership, have given in writing that no BJP leader has money in banks abroad. I want to challenge Congress to pass a law, form a committee, and bring this money to India in three years and give it to poor. But they don't want to do this as they know that their partymen are immersed in this," he said.
Referring to the allegation by Mumbai BJP president Ashih Shelar that Congress had ensured blackout of cable TV in some areas so that people don't get to see Modi speak, the Gujarat Chief Minister said, "Congress friends, Modi may not be there on TV screens but he has made place in hearts of people of the country."
Bad governance is the biggest problem before the country, he said.
"We got swaraj but not sushasan. Surajya is our birth right. The root cause of all problems is bad governance. It is like diabetes and a cause for all other diseases," he added.
Modi, who began the speech in Marathi, said, "I am confident that Maharashtra would be at the forefront of realising the dream of Congress-free India."
"Lakhs of people will rise from here and reach localities all over Maharashtra with a commitment to ensure "parivartan" (change)," he said.
"For us Gujaratis, Mumbai is second home," Modi said, adding Maharashtra is the big brother, while Gujarat is the younger brother.
Pointing out the disparity in development of Maharashtra and Gujarat, Modi said both the states came into being on May 1, 1960, but in these years, there were 14 chief ministers in Gujarat while Maharashtra had 26.
"If I talk of Gujarat, some people have stomach ache, so I will talk of Madhya Pradesh," Modi said, and lauded MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan for developing the state.
Under Chouhan's leadership, the state has shed the tag of "bimaru" state. MP lagged in agricultural sector but Chouhan government gave priority to irrigation, he said.
"What is the reason that in Maharashtra, irrigation projects have fallen in ditch due to corruption, farmers face repeated drought and are forced to commit suicide," he said.
Modi also opposed the implementation of local body tax (LBT), saying it is a technique to loot (traders).
Gujarat earned Rs 1,033 crore more than Maharashtra from border check posts, he said. "The Congress government in Maharashtra should tell people where this difference of Rs 1,033 crore has gone," he said.
Modi reiterated his claim that Maharashtra can get Rs 400 crore worth free electricity per year from Sardar Sarovar Project, if the Congress-ruled state ensures a central nod for putting gates on the dam.