Prime Minister Modi kick-started his whirlwind campaign in Karnataka today with a well-attended rally in Chamarajanagara, near Mysuru. Addressing the crowd, he said 'There is not just a wave but BJP storm in Karnataka.'
The Prime Minister, who would be addressing 15 rallies in different parts of the state in 5 days, was addressing a rally at Santhemarahalli in Chamarajanagara district.
Modi said, “Before I came here, I was told there is a 'wave' for the BJP in Karnataka. Now that I am here, I can tell you - it is much more than that. There is not a BJP wave in Karnataka but it is a BJP storm.”
Praising BJP’s state chief Yeddyurappa, the Prime Minister said, “BS Yeddyurappa is the hope of the people of Karnataka and he is going to be the next chief minister of the state.”
Interestingly Yeddyurappa has been `advised’by Amit Shah to stay away from PM’s rallies.
On day 1 of his election campaign, PM Modi also lashed out at the critics while speaking about rural electrification."We have done what was not done in the last 70 years since independence. We aim to electrify the 4 crore households of the 25 crore households which are still not electrified," the Prime Minister said.
Modi also said he dedicated the historical achievement of the country on April 28, when all villages in India were electrified, to the workers and labourers of the country on the occasion of Labour day.
Taking a dig at the Congress party, he said “In 2005, Manmohan Singh had said he will provide electricity to every village by 2009. What happened to that? In any case, we saw how the Congress treated Dr.Manmohan Singh. They tore off ordinances and disrespected him.”
Responding to Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s 15-minutes face-off challenge in Parliament, Prime Minister Modi said, “He (Rahul Gandhi) had challenged me that if he speaks for 15 minutes then I will not be able to stand in front of him. Yes, you are right, you are a 'naamdar', what right do we 'kaamdaars' have to even sit in front of you.”
Modi further challenged Rahul Gandhi to speak for 15 minutes on the achievements of Congress government in Karnataka without reading from any piece of paper.
“You (Rahul Gandhi) can speak in Hindi, English or your mother tongue,” the Prime Minister added sarcastically.
Siddaramaiah asks sharp questions
Meanwhile, in a series of tweets, Chief Minister Siddaramaiahhas asked several questions on corruption charges linked to BJP’s chief ministerial candidate Yeddyurappa.
"Dear @narendramodi, Heard you are visiting Namma Karnataka tomorrow. We welcome you to our state. While you are here, we Kannadigas would like you to address the following concerns,” first of Siddaramaiah’s chain of tweets posted with the hashtag #AnswerMaadiModi said.
Siddaramaiah assailed the Prime Minister over BJP giving tickets to "tainted" mining baron G Janardhan Reddy's brothers and associates as also declaring Yeddyurappa its chief ministerial candidate.
Would G Janardhan Reddy be joining your rallies here? You have given his family & friends 8 tickets, hoping it will help BJP in 10-15 seats.
And then, you lecture us on corruption.
Please end this hypocrisy. Kannadigas aren’t wearing Kamala on their ears.
You first make scam-tainted @BSYBJP your party’s CM face in Karnataka. Then media reports that you don’t want to be seen sharing the stage with him at rallies!
Karnataka wants to know if Yeddyurappa is still your CM candidate?
In tweets that followed, Siddaramaiah referred to incidents of rape in Uttar Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir. He alleged Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath "protected" a BJP MLA accused of sexual assault, while party MLAs defended the rapists of a child in Jammu and Kashmir.
"And then your party makes bombastic Ads to politicise rape in Karnataka?!" Siddaramaiah said.
Siddaramaiah also said the Modi government had failed to create jobs for young people and advised them to sell 'pakodas' instead. He attacked the Prime Minister over demonetisation, and not waiving farm loans.
First, you promised 15L to ppl, then Shah called it an election Jumla. You promised jobs, but then advised youth to sell pakodas. You said demonetisation would end black money, but it only brought misery to common ppl.
And then you come here and call real development a lollipop?
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