Modi prods Pawar again to attack Congress
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday again nudged NCP President Sharad Pawar to denounce a proposal to make two "Prime Ministers" - one for Jammu and Kashmir and another for India as propounded by some Congress allies.
Modi's comments came again at a public meeting in Ahmednagar in western Maharashtra - Pawar's home turf - after his remarks on similar lines at his previous political rallies in the state.
"We have no expectations on this from Congress, they are reaping what they sowed. But what's wrong with you, Sharadrao? For how long will you keep quiet on this demand for two Prime Ministers? Your party's name has 'nationalist' in it, but is it only to defraud the people of the country?" Modi asked.
Needling Pawar, Modi asked why the Maratha strongman - who had left the Congress in 1999 - was keeping mum and accused both Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party of joining hands with those who want to separate Jammu and Kashmir from India.
Modi questioned how, with Pawar around, could people speak of two Prime Ministers in one country, and also wondered how the NCP chief could tolerate such blatant separatist talk when he hails from the "land of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj" and had served as a former Union Defence Minister as well.
Vowing to safeguard the country's security and integrity, Modi asked whether the youth wanted "an honest Chowkidar" or a "corrupt naamdar" (Gandhis), would they choose India's heroes or those who are heroes in Pakistan.
He urged that it was up to the people to decide what direction the country will take.
One the one side, he said, were the Congress' hollow promises and on the other the BJP's firm commitments.
Modi said that during the Congress-NCP rule in Maharashtra, there were only terror strikes in Mumbai. However, nothing like this was witnessed during the BJP rule which he said had tackled terror with a firm hand.
"Compared to the previous Congress-led government, the world has now witnessed a strong and decisive government in the past five years. The global community views us as a major power," he said, recounting the government's achievements since 2014.
This was Modi's first rally in western Maharashtra region, the home turf of some of the most powerful Maratha clans.-IANS