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  India   All India  28 May 2018  PM Modi blasts Congress ‘lies’ over dalits, farmers

PM Modi blasts Congress ‘lies’ over dalits, farmers

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : May 28, 2018, 1:22 am IST
Updated : May 28, 2018, 4:44 am IST

Modi touched upon key issues affecting the area, including cane prices, special commission for dalits and law and order. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a roadshow in New Delhi during the inauguration of a 9-km section of the Delhi-Meerut Expressway. (Photo: Pritam Bandyopadhyay)
 Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a roadshow in New Delhi during the inauguration of a 9-km section of the Delhi-Meerut Expressway. (Photo: Pritam Bandyopadhyay)

Lucknow/New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi ripped into the Congress for spreading canards on dilution of the SC/ST Act and farmers’ issues for narrow political gains as he inaugurated two highways connecting Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Delhi and its satellite cities.

Speaking at a public rally on Sunday at Uttar Pradesh’s Baghpat after inaugurating the Rs 11,000-crore Eastern Peripheral Expressway (EPE), he said, “The truth is the Congress and the parties with it block or make fun of any work being done for the poor, dalits or tribal people.”

“People who are used to worshipping one family cannot worship democracy. After losing elections, they are rattled and in opposing Modi, they have started opposing the nation,” he said.

With an eye on Kairana, the adjoining Lok Sabha constituency where polling for a byelection will be held on Monday, the Prime Minister said, “On that side are people for whom their family is the country but for me, the country is my family.”

The Prime Minister also attacked the Congress for creating a crisis of confidence by pointing fingers at the Supreme Court, raising doubts on the Election Commission and EVMs, eyeing with suspicion the Reserve Bank and its policies and questioning every agency that investigates their acts of omissions and commissions.

The Congress negates the valour of the Army that conducted surgical strikes across the border and questions foreign dignitaries who praise India. And now they are accusing the media of being biased too,” he added.

Mr Modi started the day by throwing open the first phase of the 14-lane Delhi-Meerut Expressway that on completion will cut travel time between the two cities from 150 minutes to 45 minutes. The `7,500-crore expressway will do away with 31 traffic signals on the Delhi-Meerut road, the busiest highway in the region.

After the Delhi-Meerut road’s inauguration, Mr Modi rode an open car and held a huge roadshow. While travelling on a 9-km stretch till UP Gate, Mr Modi had assembled along the road since 8 am. From there, he took a helicopter to Baghpat where he inaugurated the EPE that will reduce the volume of commercial traffic by 35 per cent in Delhi, allowing 52,000 vehicles to bypass the national capital every day.

The EPE, planned in 2006 following the Supreme Court’s order to build a ring road outside the national capital to keep its air clean, will connect Sonipat to Palwal through Baghpat, Ghaziabad, Gautam Budh Nagar and Faridabad while serving as a bypass for vehicles entering Delhi.

At his rally in Baghpat, Mr Modi touched upon key issues affecting the area, including cane prices, special commission for dalits and law and order.

He said that the government was sensitive to the plight of sugarcane farmers and adequate steps are being taken to provide proper prices for their crop.

While talking about social justice, Mr Modi said his government is committed to protection of dalits and has constituted special courts for fast-track hearing of cases of atrocities against them.

Lauding Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath, he said criminals in the state are now surrendering and pledging not to indulge in illegal acts.

Mr Modi highlighted his government’s concern for women empowerment and said that toilets built under Swachh Bharat Mission and LPG connections under Ujjwala Yojana are making lives of women easier. He said that out of 13 crore loans given under Mudra Yojana, more than 75 per cent have been given to women entrepreneurs.

About the Ganga cleaning programme, Mr Modi said more than 200 projects worth Rs 21,000 crores have been taken up.

Asserting that infrastructure was a key priority for his government, the Prime Minister said that construction of highways has reached 27-km a day from mere 12-km a day during the Congress period. He said that under the NDA government Rs 3 lakh crores had been spent on laying a network of 28,000 km of highways.

The EPE is India’s first highway to be lit by solar power besides provisions of rain water harvesting every 500 metre on both sides. It also showcases 36 national monuments and 40 fountains. The expressway has eight solar power plants with a capacity of 4000-kilo watt (4 MW). The foundation stone of the project was laid by Mr Modi on November 5, 2015.

Anticipating that the highway inauguration event may be converted by the PM into an indirect campaign speech on the eve of Kairana bypoll, the Opposition had complained to the EC about a possible violation of the model code of conduct, but it was turned down.

After the Prime Minister’s rally, the Congress hit out at him saying that while he spoke of development at Baghpat, a farmer died protesting against the non-payment of sugarcane dues, not far from his event’s venue.

The Opposition party also alleged that the BJP-led NDA government was trying to project development and infrastructure schemes initiated by the previous UPA government as its own.

“The effort was to portray its (NDA government’s) failures as its achievements... A farmer, not far away, died protesting against the non-payment of cane dues. The Prime minister did not utter a word. He could have taken time out to visit his house,” Congress spokesperson Shaktisinh Gohil said.

Sugarcane farmers have been protesting in Badaut, about 30 km from the venue of Mr Modi’s rally, for the past six days.

Tags: narendra modi, supreme court, election commission
Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi