‘Riding’ on BrahMos, PM Narendra Modi raises water woes to bombs to go after Congress in Bengaluru

Referring to himself in the third person, PM said, “Issue of Congress and INDIA is Modi, Modi's family, and wrongfully accusing Modi.”

ByNolan Patrick Pinto

Published Apr 20, 2024 | 7:47 PMUpdatedApr 20, 2024 | 7:47 PM

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a meeting in Chikkaballapur. (X)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that today’s India is not a follower but a first mover due to his government strengthening the country over the past decade.

Launching a campaign blitzkrieg ahead of the elections to the 18th Lok Sabha at the Palace Grounds in Bengaluru on Saturday, 20 April, he attributed the change to the common man’s vote that took him to power.

“In 2014 and 2019, you gave us a record number of votes and made a strong government, which strengthened the country. India was considered one of the five fragile economies of the world. Indian banks were in crisis. Scams worth thousands of crores had scared foreign investors,” he claimed.

Drawing a comparison between his government and the previous dispensations at the Centre, he said, “We have seen those days, and we are seeing these days also. The world wants to strengthen its relations with India. Investors want to make record investments in the country.”

“India is doing record exports and creating new records in manufacturing as well. Today, India is not a follower, it has become the first mover. This change has happened in 10 years. What is the reason for this change? The reason for this change is your vote,” Modi said.

Related: Why is Modi govt unfair to Karnataka in sharing revenues, Cong asks before PM’s visit

Bengaluru under tanker mafia’s mercy

Launching a broadside against the Congress, the prime minister said the current dispensation in the state converted Bengaluru, a tech city, into a tanker city, leaving it to the tanker mafia.

He was referring to the city’s shortage of water. The Congress had defeated the BJP in the 10 May elections to the state Assembly.

Modi further referred to recent untoward incidents reported from Karnataka and held the Congress responsible for the “deteriorating” law and order situation.

“The kind of thoughts and ideology being promoted by the Congress government in Karnataka is dangerous. Our daughters are being attacked, bombs are exploding in markets, and people are being attacked for listening to religious songs,” the prime minister said.

“These incidents are not common,” he said without specifically mentioning the recent murder of a woman in Hubbali, the Rameshwaram Cafe blast in Bengaluru, and the attack on a shopkeeper near Siddanna Layout in the capital city.

“I urge my brothers and sisters to stay very alert of the Congress,” Modi added.

Ground Report: About guarantees, accessibility, and performance of State vs Centre

‘Congress is anti-development’

The prime minister also said the Congress and the party-led Opposition INDIA bloc have been targeting him.

“The issue of Congress and INDIA is Modi, Modi’s family, and wrongfully accusing Modi. But Modi’s focus is on the development of 21st-century India,” he referred to himself in the third person.

Modi further claimed that he would make the country a hub of the global economy. The country would become hubs for green energy, pharma, electronics, electrical vehicle, semiconductor, and global innovation, he said.

“But the people in the Congress and the ‘INDI Alliance’ say they will remove Modi. It is Modi’s guarantee that after 5G, we will now launch 6G, they say they will remove Modi,” he stressed on the “remove Modi” part.

“It is Modi’s guarantee that we will bring AI (Artificial Intelligence), but they say they will remove Modi. It is Modi’s guarantee that after Chandrayaan, we will now make India proud with Gaganyaan. They say they will remove Modi,” he reiterated.

Addressing the youth, the prime minister said the Congress was against them. “The Congress is anti-youth because it is anti-investment, it is anti-entrepreneurship, it is anti-private sector, it is anti-taxpayer, it is anti-wealth creator,” Modi thundered.

Also Read: Congress moves EC against Karnataka BJP chief over alleged remark on guarantee schemes

Riding on BrahMos

Further appealing to the youth, the prime minister mentioned the export of the first consignment of BrahMos missiles to the Philippines.

“Yesterday, the first consignment of India’s BrahMos missile has been dispatched to the Philippines. This has generated employment opportunities in large numbers at the ground level. Could all this have been imagined during the Congress’ rule,” he asked.

“The Congress foul-mouthed Modi and the HAL all over the country. The same HAL now has a record turnover, record profit, and receiving a record number of orders,” he said.

The Hindustan Aeronautical Limited — or HAL — is headquartered in Bengaluru.

“Asia’s largest helicopter factory has been set up in Karnataka. After America, Boeing’s second biggest facility has been set up in Karnataka. This is happening only when the number of factories in India is increasing, and the number of people working in those factories is also increasing,” he stated.

Modi claimed that the tax burden on citizens has been eased. “Before 2014, you were liable to pay Income Tax on your annual income of just ₹2 lakh. But now, you are exempted from paying Income Tax on your income of up to ₹7 lakh,” he said.

“Before 2014, various indirect taxes increased your shopping and restaurant bills. After the implementation of GST, indirect taxes have been reduced. This has saved thousands of crores of your money,” the prime minister claimed.

Polling in 14 Lok Sabha constituencies in Karnataka will be held on 26 April.

Also Read: Senior BJP leader and former minister Malikayya Guttedar joins Congress

Jairam Ramesh’s questions to Modi

Just before Modi’s Bengaluru event, AICC general secretary Jairam Ramesh took to X and raised three questions:

1. Where are the grants awarded to Bengaluru by the 15th Finance Commission?
2. ⁠ Why are BJP leaders misbehaving with financial fraud victims?
3. ⁠ Is the #BJPWashingMachine hard at work for Shobha Karandlaje?

(Edited by Majnu Babu).