Rajkot: In an apparent jibe at the new opposition bloc ‘INDIA’, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said though “corrupt and dynast” people have changed the name of their jamaat (community), their behaviour and goals remain the same, and added they are angry as dreams of common people are being fulfilled under his government.
The PM, on a two-day Gujarat visit, launched the fresh attack on the 26-party opposition alliance while addressing a huge gathering at the Race Course Ground in Rajkot after inaugurating an international airport and various other development projects for the city.
“It is natural for some people to get upset when the country is making progress. Those who kept people deprived (of development) and never had any concerns for the needs and aspirations of our citizens are now angry because dreams of common people are now being fulfilled,” Modi said.
The PM accused the opposition of practicing double standards while raising issues related to citizens.
“Though these dynasts and corrupt people have changed the name of their jamaat (community), their face, behaviour and intentions are the same old. When the middle-class gets something cheaper, they claim farmers are not getting proper price (for their products). When farmers get good prices, they claim inflation is soaring. This double standards is the hallmark of their politics” said Modi without taking any names.
Last week, 26 opposition parties came together and formed a new grouping, Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA), at a meeting in Bengaluru to take on the BJP-led NDA in the 2024 Lok Sabha polls. The previous anti-BJP alliance was called the UPA, which was headed by the Congress.
In his address, the PM stated that his government came to office in 2014 with a “guarantee” of delivering good governance and the same has been fulfilled during the nine-year tenure of the BJP-led NDA dispensation at the Centre.
Praising his administration for keeping inflation under control, Modi said the price of one litre of milk would have cost Rs 300 if the past government (of Congress and its allies) had continued in office.
“Just see their track record in terms of inflation. When they were in power, the rate of inflation was 10 per cent. Prices would have been touching the sky today if we had not controlled the inflation. Had they been in power at present, one litre of milk would have cost Rs 300 while one kg of dal would have been sold for Rs 500,” he said.
The PM maintained the BJP-led government managed to contain the price rise despite the coronavirus pandemic and the ongoing Ukraine-Russia war.
“The rate of inflation in our neighbouring countries is 25 to 30 per cent. But, that is not the case in India. We have been trying to control inflation and will continue to do so,” he added.
Modi said thanks to the efforts of his government, nearly 13.5 crore people came out of poverty during the last five years alone.
According to the PM, mobile phone users would have been paying nearly Rs 6,000 as their monthly bill if the previous government had stayed in office today.
“Every citizen today uses 20 GB of mobile data per month. In 2014 (when BJP came to power at Centre), the cost of 1GB data was Rs 300. Had they (Congress and its allies) been in power at present, people would have been paying Rs 6,000 as their monthly bill. But, for 20GB, the bill you pay at present is just Rs 300 to Rs 400. You are saving nearly Rs 5,000 per month,” he said.
From the stage, the PM inaugurated various development projects, including packages 8 and 9 of the Saurashtra Narmada Avtaran Irrigation (SAUNI) Yojana.
The recently completed packages of the SAUNI scheme will provide water to 52,398 acres of irrigable land in 95 villages and potable water to around 98,000 people in Gujarat’s Saurashtra region.
Other projects include a multi-level flyover, a water treatment plant and a library with over 33,000 books.
Prior to addressing the gathering, Modi inaugurated an international airport near Rajkot city in the afternoon. He had performed the ground-breaking ceremony of the international airport at Hirasar village near Rajkot city in October 2017.
After inaugurating the aerodrome, the first greenfield international airport of Gujarat, he went inside the premises and interacted with officials on technical and other aspects of the project.
The greenfield airport has been built at a cost of Rs 1,405 crore and is located approximately 30 km from Rajkot city, said an official release.
The airport premises is spread over an area of 1,025.50 hectares (2,534 acres) out of which the Airports Authority of India has constructed the airport in an area of 1,500 acres. It has a 3,040 meter long and 45-meter-wide runway which can park 14 planes at any given point, said the release. Civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, Gujarat chief minister Bhupendra Patel and members of his cabinet were present at the function.