Opposition leaders coming together to save themselves: Modi

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Cuttack: Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses a rally on the occasion of four years of completion of his government in Cuttack on May 26, 2018. (Photo: IANS)

Cuttack, May 26: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday attacked the opposition unity, saying the corrupt leaders are coming together “not to save the country but to save themselves”, making an apparent attack on Congress President Rahul Gandhi and his mother Sonia Gandhi.

“Due to the commitment of this government against black money and corruption, people who are out on bail in the Rs 5,000-crore corruption case and many others involved in other corruption cases have come together on the same platform,” Modi said addressing a rally here on the occasion of completion of four years of his government.

He was apparently referring to Gandhis taking bail in the National Herald case and opposition leaders coming together in Bengaluru during the Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy’s swearing-in ceremony.

“As we promised four years ago about zero tolerance towards corruption, four former Chief Ministers are behind bars,” Modi said.

The Prime Minister also said that his is a “committed government” instead of being a “confused government”.

“With a clear commitment to work, we have shown how this government along with its ally parties is capable of taking harsh decisions and strict measures,” he said.

“When a committed government works, then decisions like surgical strike and much-delayed One Rank-One Pension are taken.”

“On seeing this government’s commitment against corruption, even enemies have become good friends,” he said, adding that the people of the country are watching them all.

“These leaders have not come together for the country, they have come together to save themselves and their families.”

Modi said that in the last four years, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has become the party from Panchayat to Parliament.

He alleged that the opposition leaders want to destabilise the current government, “but people know everything”.

Taking a dig at the opposition, the Prime Minister said: “The people who try to confuse the people for power can’t bring back black money, neither they can fight against corruption.”

Reminding the gathering of the corruption cases four years ago, Modi said: “People need to remember the situation of the country four years ago. This is important to remember what a family did for the country that remained in power for 48 years.”

“How people can forget the cases of corruption in the previous government due to which the image of the country was maligned across the globe?” he said.

Attacking the Gandhis for guiding former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on every key decisions, Modi said: “They believed in the development of their party as against the development of the nation. They remote-controlled the Prime Minister and issued directions to several ministers on email.

“But now the government does not run from Janpath (the official address of Gandhis), it runs from Janmat (people’s mandate).”

The Prime Minister also stressed that the President (Ram Nath Kovind), Vice President (M. Venkaiah Naidu) and the “Pradhan Sewak” (Prime Servant) of the country come from very humble and poor background.

“We have seen the days of poverty … we were not born with silver spoons. In fact, we did not see the spoon in our initial days,” Modi said, in an apparent jibe at Rahul Gandhi.

The Prime Minister also said that in last four years, the investigating agencies have carried out searches at over 3,000 locations and unearthed over Rs 53,000 crore of the undisclosed money.

Modi claimed that the government seized properties worth over Rs 3,500 crore after the Benami Properties Bill was passed by the government.

“It was the commitment of the government that led to the passage of Benami Properties Bill, unlike the confused government which delayed it for over 30 years,” he said.

Modi said about half of the country’s population is deprived of basic needs and that most of the schemes were only meant for the upper layer of the society.

“Over 50 per cent of the population does not have the gas connection, electricity connection and bank accounts. More than 50 per cent of the villages did not have road connectivity and half of the population did not have toilets in their homes,” he said.

“Who were the people comprising this deprived half? They were the poor, the Dalits, tribals and others,” he said.

Highlighting the works of his government in the last four years, Modi said: “Since coming to power in 2014, we have moved from incompleteness to completeness.

“Now the electricity has reached every village of the country. Now about 80 per cent of the population resides in clean surrounding as compared to 39 per cent in 2014. We have built over seven crore toilets in the last four years, which was earlier only six crore across the country,” Modi said.

The Prime Minister pointed out that the government has abolished over 1,400 such laws which were not useful.

He also highlighted several schemes which his government launched for the people, including the Jan-Dhan Yojana, Mudra Yojana, Ujjwala Yojana, agriculture insurance scheme and several others that have changed the life of poors and farmers across the country.