Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday compared Kerala’s ruling Left Democratic Front to Judas as he campaigned for the BJP’s Palakkad candidate E Sreedharan in his first rally in the state for the assembly elections.
“Judas betrayed Lord Christ for a few pieces of silver. LDF has betrayed Kerala for a few pieces of gold,” the Prime Minister said, as he targeted the Pinarayi Vijayan government over the gold smuggling case. The BJP has made the gold smuggling case its prime issue in the election issue, as home minister Amit Shah has also previously accused the CM of being directly linked to the suspects in the scam.
The PM said that the BJP would offer a vision to the state that is refreshingly different from the status quo, as he pitched Sreedharan as an alternative. The man behind the Delhi Metro and many other prestigious projects across the country is the BJP’s most known face in Kerala, and has been pitched as a possible CM candidate for the saffron party.
“Metroman Sreedharan Ji, a man who has done excellent work to make India modern and improve connectivity, a man admired by all sections of society, has devoted himself to Kerala’s progress. As a true son of Kerala, he thought beyond power and stood firm on his commitment to Kerala,” the PM said.
E Sreedharan, who addressed the crowd before the PM, said he had drawn up a master plan for this constituency, which includes 24-hour water supply and efficient solid waste management scheme. “I also want to have green cover for the area by planting 25 lakh trees in next 5 years,” he said.
The Prime Minister also equated the LDF with the Congress-led UDF, the main opposition in the state. “For many years, the worst kept secret of Kerala politics was the friendly agreement of UDF and LDF. Now, the first time voter of Kerala is asking — what is this match fixing? People are seeing how UDF & LDF misled them,” he said.
“Both have their marked areas for making money. UDF has not even spared the rays of the sun,” he added.
Taking on the Left parties on political violence in the state, Modi said they have been in power many times in Kerala but their leaders still behave like junior level goons or party leaders. “Under their eyes and with their blessings, political rivals are killed, hacked, beaten,” Modi said.
He promised that if voted to power, the BJP government will stop the culture of violence in the southern state. “In a democracy we can have political differences. But, violence is not acceptable. So many of our young BJP Karyakartas have lost their lives. A BJP government in Kerala will stop this culture of violence”, Modi said.