If the BJP is voted to power, it will change the face of India, former deputy prime minister and senior BJP leader L K Advani said here Monday.
Addressing his first rally ahead of the Lok Sabha election, Advani said that when the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) was led by Atal Bihari Vajpayee, India faced huge problems in the form of international sanctions after the nuclear tests in Pokhran and due to the mega-earthquake in Gujarat.
"Despite all these problems, the country's economy was strong and we did not allow inflation. We constructed highways and village roads. There was all-round progress," Advani said in his speech peppered with praise for the party's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.
He said that if the Vajpayee government had got more time, it would have taken up the revolutionary river garland project which would have ensured adequate water for all farmers in the country and no state would have ever had to face droughts.
On Gujarat, Advani said that earlier, the Sabarmati river was reduced to a huge gutter.
"After Narendra Modi became chief minister, he took up the project to beautify Sabarmati river. Today, it resembles the Seine which flows through Paris. If people vote for Modi as prime minister, it will be good for the country," said Advani, who is contesting from Gujarat's Gandhinagar Lok Sabha constituency.
In a rare public appreciation for Modi, Advani said each home in India should get tap water and electricity.
"BJP-ruled states like Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh have achieved this."
BJP national secretary Shyam Jaju said Modi has been readied under Advani's tutelage, like many other party leaders.
"For building up the BJP, Advani has a lion's share," Jaju said, acknowledging the 87-year old leader's contribution to the party.