NEW DELHI: Two days after the Congress unveiled its minimum income guarantee poll plank, the BJP latched on to the success of “Mission Shakti” to steer the political discourse back to national security.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi harped on the “parakram (power)” of the country to assure the people of the country’s security preparedness to meet any challenge, while Union ministers Arun Jaitely and Nirmala Sitharaman credited the leadership with giving scientists the go-ahead for the anti-satellite missile test.
The demonstration of the anti-satellite capability follows India’s air strike on a terrorist camp at Balakot in Pakistan, which has seemingly become the BJP’s principal poll plank, with its stress on the “decisive” leadership of Modi.
The prime minister, in a televised address on Wednesday, explained the scale of the achievement for the security of the country.
Within hours of Modi’s address, beamed on multiple social media platforms, Union ministers tried to credit the scientific achievement to the “decisive leadership” of the prime minister.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s apparent mocking of Modi by wishing him “Happy World Theatre Day” provided enough alibi to the BJP to launch an attack on the erstwhile UPA government.
“The successful anti-satellite test in space appears to have troubled some people on the ground. Heirs of dynastic politics see drama in everything, for they take the world as a theatre. Martyrdom of soldiers, achievements of scientists, all seem drama to such people,” retorted BJP chief Amit Shah.
Shah claimed that the Congress-led UPA had lacked the political will to support the abilities of the country’s scientists, who were ready with the mission in the past.
Jaitley, while speaking to reporters, claimed that the UPA government lacked clarity on defence preparedness.
“The Congress and its allies committed a historical blunder by seeking proof for the air strike within Pakistan,” claimed Jaitley.
Testing the plank
The BJP will watch the public response to Modi’s rallies from March 28 to April 5 to gauge the political efficacy of the national security poll plank, sources said.