Mumbai: In a sarcastic attack on the BJP on the first anniversary of the second term of the NDA government, the Shiv Sena on Monday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi is an "indispensable" leader but can lives of those people who died unnecessarily during the 2016 noteban and the ongoing lockdown be brought back again.
The Sena also said the imposition of "bungled" lockdown and hardships being faced by migrant workers in the last two months reminded of the plight of the people displaced during the Partition of 1947.
"India is fortunate to have leadership like Narendra Modi! He feels for the country and various issues. He is a strong and capable leader and there is no alternative to him," said the editorial in the Sena mouthpiece 'Saamana'.
Stating that Modi has taken some good decision as the prime minister, the edit also said that like "some mistakes which had happened in the 60 years (preceding 2014 when the Congress had mostly ruled the country),the last six years (of the NDA government) had also seen some mistakes".
The Congress is a ruling constituent in the Sena-led Maharashtra government. Recently, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had said that his party was not a decision maker in the Maharashtra government, triggering speculation over coordination among three partners, other being the NCP, in the state government.
"The manner in which the lockdown was imposed in the country and hardships the poor migrant labourers had to suffer because of it reminded many of the Partition days. "How to rectify this mistake? India is fortunate to have Modi as the leader, but how can life of those who died during the lockdown and demonetisation (in 2016) be brought back again?" the Sena questioned.
The Sena also took a dig at leaders of the BJP for hailing the last six years of the NDA rule like never before. "If leaders of the BJP to be believed our country has history of only six years (since Modi came to power in 2014). It seems India did not exist prior to that. Fight for Independence and struggle to become a nation, and the country's growth on fronts of industry, society, science and medicine is just an illusion," the edit said.
The Sena, however, said Modi had rectified some past mistakes by "abrogating Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir, abolishing triple talaq, and starting the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya".
"In 1971, Indira Gandhi avenged Partition of India by breaking Pakistan and creating Bangladesh. Should this be considered a historic achievement or a blunder?"(late PM) Rajiv Gandhi had laid foundation for digital revolution in India. (Former PMs) Narasimha Rao and ManmohanSingh had improved the country's economy. If all this is wrong, how are you (BJP) going to rectify this?" the Sena asked the BJP.
In the last 70 years, Atal Bihari Vajpayee of BJP had served as the PM for five-and-a-half years while other leaders like VP Singh and Chandrashekar served as PMs for nearly two years, it said. "Those who saythat all this period was a waste and India grew in just six years from 2014,it would be wrong," it said.
The Sena further said that the previous governments had committed the blunder of insulting patriot V D Savarkar in the last 60 years. "But why was Bharat Ratna was not given to Savarkar in the last six years and the old mistake was rectified?" it asked while targetting the ruling BJP.
The Sena said that imposition of GST and demonetisation, which the NDA government counts as its major achievements, indeed crippled the economy and left many jobless. The editorial further said that removal of the Article 370 did no good to Jammu and Kashmir.
"Trouble has started on Indo-China border. A country like Nepal is claiming our land. This is not a sign of being 'Atmanirbhar' and strong," it added