Friday, May 9, 2014


Narendra Modi berates Sonia Gandhi for low level attacks

Sandhya Jain9 May 2014
Sandhya Jain is a political analyst and independent researcher. She is the author of ‘Adi Deo Arya Devata- A Panoramic View of Tribal-Hindu Cultural Interface’ (Rupa & Co., 2004) and ‘Evangelical Intrusions. Tripura: A Case Study’ (Rupa & Co., 2009).

Drinking deep from his secret fountain of energy, an indefatigable Narendra Modi fired a fusillade of charges against the ruling UPA and particularly the Congress president Sonia Gandhi for a relentless campaign of vilification and defamation against him from the time he was anointed Prime Ministerial nominee of the BJP in September 2013. For the first time ever, he accused her of responsibility for the corruption in the Agusta Westland helicopter deal (which was done at her instance, according to the prime accused in documents furnished in the Italian court) and a host of other high level corruption cases.
Addressing his last 3D hologram rally on Friday evening as the long drawn out election campaign finally ends at 6pm on Saturday, May 10, the Gujarat veteran said that all the lowly tricks of the Congress’s ruling dynasty would come to naught and the party would be trounced in Amethi, which fact was proving difficult to digest.
From day one, he charged, the Congress and the UPA had tried to communalise the election with the help of intellectuals and vested interests, but their attempts to derail the political discourse failed because he (Modi) and the BJP stuck to their agenda of development and good governance, and adhered to their deep commitment to nationalism. Realising that this time communalism would not yield dividends, the Congress, since it did not wish to address the issue of work done (or not done) by the UPA, trained its guns on Gujarat even though this is not a State election. All kinds of baseless allegations were levelled in order to grab media eyeballs, he grimaced.
When this failed to impress the people, the Congress went after his personal life, trying desperately to find some dirt from his childhood to the present. Initially, they mocked at his being a tea seller, then they insulted his original profession (a reference to Mani Shankar Aiyar’s diatribe at the AICC session), but when they found that the people still loved him, and that his poverty and humble origins went down well with the people, they deputed media persons to go to his village and find out if he really had sold tea; the truth made them unhappy.
After all kinds of shenanigans (a reference to his personal life), the Congress leaders even brought his mother into the campaign (some leaders said that he and not his eldest brother should take care of his mother). Congress, he said firmly, “winning and losing is part of life; but you went so low”. Sharing his anguish of the past two months of heightened personal attacks with the people for the first time, Narendra Modi said he was able to put up with the defamation only because he knew that the people were with him. He had left his home, he said, for the mother that is Bharat and the family that is 125 crore people. “My upbringing and my values (sanskaras) which I have adhered to all my life do not permit me to go low and do the politics of jaat-paat (caste) and how and low (unch-neech), but you went down so low to make false allegations about my jati, just because you are losing power”, he lamented.
Rebutting an allegation that he had put his caste in the list of OBCs in Gujarat after becoming Chief Minister in 2001, Narendra Modi said that the Congress knew that the classification of castes was done on the basis of the 1994 decision by a Congress regime. At different times, different sections of society have been included in the OBC list by various commissions, he said. “I from a jati which is not even half per cent of the population,” he explained, adding that “abuse me if you like, hang me, but why are you attacking my poor jati? There must be some limit to lies”.
Sold out news traders will keep the Congress afloat for some time, he conceded, but can the lies succeed?. Naming Sonia Gandhi, he said she had crossed all limits of civilised discourse by trying to teach him manners and alleging that, ‘chowkidars do chowkidari, but one does theft’. Loudly denouncing this loose language, the BJP veteran said that she needed to understand the culture (tehzeeb) of the poor in India. In Gujarat, he said, the job of certain poor persons is to carry tiffin boxes from the homes of convicts and serve it to them in jail. These people spend their lives serving criminals and interacting with their families. They move on cycles, and never, ever, however hungry they may be, do they steal a roti from the box. The Congress, however, he thundered, “stole toilet paper in the Commonwealth Games, from coal, from the Westland helicopter, 2G, and you will talk tehzeeb; you will teach us?”
Insisting that he did not wish to breach civilised behaviour, he named Sonia Gandhi and said that he had doggedly persevered with the agenda of development and good governance despite provocations, but she was persisting with her arrogance and charging him of low thinking, “neech soch”. If talking about employment for youth; water and minimum support price for farmers; safety for mothers and sisters; if protesting at farmer suicides and the beheading of jawans; of education and good schools for the poor, amounts to “neech soch”, then so be it, he said.
A look at the facts, however, would soon reveal who does “neech soch” and the politics of untouchability. A minister in the Congress regime in Kerala, he told the audience, had come to Gujarat some months ago to see the development there related to his portfolio. He met the Chief Minister and when the photograph of the meeting appeared in a Kerala newspaper, the Chief Minister asked him for an explanation. Is this democracy, he asked. Similarly, the Leftists, who think they are great intellectuals and rationalists, but say one thing and do another, actually expelled a Muslim MP of Kerala two years ago because he said that for development the Gujarat model should be emulated; is this tolerance?
Warming up to his theme, the Gujarat veteran said that last year, the great singer Lata Mangeshkar said at a function in Pune that if he (Modi) became the Prime Minister it would be good for the nation. At this, he mused, all hell broke out and some Congressmen even said that the Bharat Ratna should be taken back from her! This, he said, is a specimen (namuna) of the untouchability practiced by the Congress. On another occasion, cine star Amitabh Bachchan was disinvited from a function regarding the Mumbai sealink bridge because he was the ambassador of Gujarat tourism!
Directly accusing Sonia Gandhi of lowly politics, he said that the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation chaired by her produced a report by a team of economic professionals on development some four or five years ago, and concluded that Gujarat was the best model of development. At this, they were removed from their jobs. “What thinking was this?” he roared, “this is your behaviour and you are teaching us?”
The Congress, he told the people, has lost ground completely in these elections, it has no issues to talk about, no guts to win the people back, and relies on news traders to float rumours and keep it in business. The looming defeat in Amethi is proving indigestible, he mocked, but the unhappy people of the constituency will have their revenge this time.
The news traders say on television that there is national fatigue with the election. However, having spent the day campaigning in Bihar on Friday, he found the fervour of the people at an all time high despite the burning heat. If there was fatigue, there would not be such high polling in the 8th phase of the election; this is the rant of rootless experts in air conditioned rooms.
India democracy, he said, is something the world can be proud of. Despite the poverty, the heat, lakhs come out to vote and participate in rallies, and this commitment deserves respect. Though he has travelled the length and breadth of India for 40 years, the BJP leader said that this time he moved with a new sense of responsibility; with a sense of yagna like during the Navratras, to understand the people. He appealed that the last phase of polling on May 12 – which is also the day of his election in Varanasi – should beat the records of the previous phases.
Kashi, he recalled fondly, gave him unstinted love on Thursday, with the result that a 10 minute drive to the BJP office from the BHU campus took almost four hours, and put the policemen to much trouble. He urged the people to uphold the Ganga Jamuni tehzeen of Kashi while voting, so that the shehnai of Ustad Bismillah Khan can be heard in the air…
Targetting the States of Bengal, Bihar and western Uttar Pradesh which vote on May 12, the BJP’s Prime Ministerial contender said that for Bengal, the good days have already begun with the Supreme Court ordering tough action in the Saradha chit fund scam that looted the poor of their hard earned money.
He urged the Election Commission to move Central forces in adequate number to ensure free and fair polling in the last phase of the election, adding that people in Sivan had told him they were afraid, and that despite his warning, justice was not done to the Muzaffarpur voter.
Maintaining tremendous stage presence to the end, Narendra Modi said this 12th round of 3D interaction with voters had enabled him to reach out to people in over 1300 locations, and he could give his message directly, without editing or mischief (a gentle dig at the controversy over his interview to Doordarshan). This innovative use of technology, he said, is a golden landmark in this election and something a developing country like India can be justly proud of the election .

8:56 am: My campaign will end on Saturday and thank you all for showing such great enthusiasm and coming out in such big numbers to make our political rallies such a big hit. Long live democracy.

8:54 am: We said good days are coming...and the start is made. Supreme Court has taken a step to give justice to those who lost money in Sharda Scam.

8:52 am: I will urge voters in Kashi that people vote in large numbers and the polling is peaceful.

8:46 am: Congress has lost ground and motive in this Lok Sabha poll. Addressing the 3D rally has been quite an experience for me. This has helped me to connect with people of in part of country. But this campaign trail has helped me to learn and understand about the common needs and problems of the country.

8:40 am: Congress and its allies are infected with politics of untouchability. One of the CPI MP from Kerala was sacked from the party for praising Gujarat Model of development. Even Bharat Ratna awardee Lata Mangeshkar had to face opposition from Congress members for publically praising Modi. 
Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan had to face Congress's heat in Mumbai for promoting Gujarat tourism.

8:36 am: Madam Sonia has violated the dignity. They are now talking about 'neech' soch. If thinking about well being of farmers, safety and security of women, education for poor children, proper medical treatment of ill, so be it. I am ready to be called as neech.

8:32 am: Bharat Mata is my Mother and people of India are my family. I have always believed that there is no caste or creed. 
Congress has excepted its defeat in Amethi, and it is nothing but frustration that is coming out of the mouth of Congress people. But Amethi has decided that this years' of injustice has to be answered.

8:28 am: They did not even spare my mother. Congressmen should know defeat come and go but why stoop to such lows? Abuse Modi or do whatever you wish to, but at least spare the small community I come from.

8:26 am: To gain cheap publicity the Congress stooped too low. Since they had no answers to the BJP they started badmouthing me and my family. They made innumerable false statements to throw dirt on me. They went to see whether I sold tea or not. They mocked and insulted me. They even made baseless allegations over my caste.

8:22 am: Poll campaigning ends on Saturday and if I look back at the entire process Congress has crossed every limit to malign this period. The UPA has made a joke of this election. But we went ahead undeterred.

8:20 am: This is my 12th round of 3D rallies and I have addressed 3D rallies across 1300 locations. It is a matter of pride not for me but for the people of this country, considered as a third world nation, who achieved such a remarkable feat.

8:18 am: It is my fortune that I got an opportunity to connect with the people of my country with such an unique way. Technology has assisted me to reach out to you without any diversion and delusion. The last phase of Lok Sabha poll is going to end on May 12. 8:14 am: Narendra Modi starts his last 3D rally on the season.

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