Chandigarh: Kicking off the campaign for the Lok Sabha elections this year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday hit out at the Congress for the involvement of its leaders in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots and for appointing Kamal Nath as the chief minister of Madhya Pradesh.
Addressing a rally in Gurdaspur district, Modi said people of Punjab should beware of those whose history involves “the killings of thousands of Sikhs and those who continue to appoint riot-accused persons as chief ministers of states,” in a not-so-veiled reference to Nath’s alleged role in the riots.
The MP chief minister was indicted by the Nanavati Commission for his role in the 1984 riots but charges against him were dropped due to a lack of evidence.
Lauding his government’s effort of forming an SIT to probe the riots, which recently led to the conviction of Congress leader Sajjan Kumar in the case, Modi said, "On one family's direction, the files of those involved in the riots were put under wraps, but the NDA dug out these and set up a SIT and results are before you."
Touting his party’s work on the Kartarpur corridor, he said it was his government that took the historic decision to link Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur to Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur in Pakistan, as the BJP woos Sikhs ahead of the key polls.
Modi said in reference to Punjab Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu's Pakistan visit for the Kartarpur Corridor ceremony, Modi said, "Just for their politics, Congress leaders gave a chance to Pakistan. It is surprising that these Congress leaders did not even pay heed to their own Punjab CM."
“We sent two ministers across the border seeing the importance of the moment. But the country has seen that how Congress leaders gave an opportunity to Pakistan for its political motives. It is surprising that these Congress leaders did not even pay heed to their own Punjab CM,” he said, in a clear dig at Navjot Singh Sidhu, who walked away with most of the credit for the corridor.
The PM also launched a scathing attack on the Congress over its farm loan waivers in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. The Congress waived loans of farmers in all three states soon after wresting them from the BJP, but Modi claimed the Congress had deceived them with tall promises.
Modi said the Congress in Punjab, too, had made big promises to farmers, but deceived them after coming to power. “Congress ne desh ko ‘gharibi hatao’ ke naare ke saath thaga, vo ab desh ko karzmaafi ke naam par thag rahi hai (After the slogan of remove poverty, Congress is trying to fool the nation with loan waivers),” Modi said at the rally.