The Congress is blinded by its “anti-Modi approach” and has stopped thinking in the nation’s interest, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in Jammu and Kashmir’s Akhnoor on Thursday, raising issues of national security and terrorism and questioning the party’s statements following the Balakot strike.
Addressing his first rally in the state after national elections were announced on March 10, Modi claimed the speeches of Congress leaders receive applause in Pakistan.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi today promised to ease business opportunities for entrepreneurs, saying that the party would free the new business from clutches of red tape, and allow easy access to bank credit if Congress is voted to power. He also promised that new ventures by youth will not require any permission to operate for three years.
BJP chief Amit Shah, meanwhile, promised to deport immigrants from Assam if the BJP and Prime Minister return to power, and said it was only the saffron party that brought development to the northeastern state. He also attacked the Congress over national security, and said only BJP and Modi can protect India’s borders.
Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in Uttarakhand that the state did not witness any development before 2014 because of the policies of the Congress, which was also responsible for the corruption plaguing the state.
In Meerut, he said the people of India had decided the mandate for 2019 and were ready to bring the BJP back to power. Addressing an election rally, Modi said, “I will give you an account of what I did…and I will also get you an account of what others have done…you know I am your ‘chowkidar’ and I will do justice to you…there will be accountability and everyone will be made accountable.” He also coined the acronym SARAB to hit out at the UP mahagathbandan, inviting Opposition ire.
Meanwhile, rebel BJP MP Shatrughan Sinha will join the Congress on April 6 after much dilly-dallying. Sinha was supposed to join the grand old party today but it was delayed after tussle intensified within the Bihar Mahagathbandhan over seat sharing. Veteran Congress leader Ramdeo Rai has reportedly told the top brass that the seat-sharing arrangement was not in favour of the grand old party and also questioned the Congress’s decision to hold discussions on the seats it holds. He added that the Congress must not be considered a rookie player in coalition politics and the party would gain strength only if it wins in Darbhanga and Aurangabad.
The development comes a day after the Darbhanga Lok Sabha seat, represented by former test cricketer Kirti Azad who recently quit the BJP and joined the Congress, emerged as the new bone of contention in the Mahagathbandhan, with the RJD stating that it wished to field its veteran leader Abdul Bari Siddiqui from the seat. The Lalu Prasad-led party contended that its candidate had lost the seat to the BJP by a thin margin in 2014. State Congress president Madan Mohan Jha, when approached with queries about the RJD’s claim, had said Darbhanga was an “important seat”, but a final call will be taken by the party’s high command.
In a pre-dawn swoop today, Income Tax officials along with CRPF personnel carried out raids at the residences of Karnataka Minor Irrigation Minister CS Puttaraju and his nephew. Speaking to a private news channel, JD(S) leader Puttaraju said three teams of Income Tax officials and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel carried out raids at his Chinnakurli residence in Mandya and his nephew’s house in Mysuru.
The development came a day after, Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy raised fears about possible raids on Congress and JD(S) functionaries in the state. He had claimed that CRPF personnel were brought from various parts of the country to carry out the raids in the state. Raids on Congress and JD(S) leaders can take place early Thursday morning using CRPF jawans instead of taking the help of the Karnataka Police in order to maintain secrecy, Kumaraswamy had claimed on Wednesday. “Three teams of I-T officials and CRPF soldiers comprising eight soldiers carried out raids at my Chinnakurli residence in Mandya and my nephew’s residence in Mysuru,” Puttaraju told the channel.
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