New Delhi: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Amit Shah launched the ruling party’s general election campaign on Friday, telling a forum of senior leaders of the party that the idea of a grand alliance was defeated in 2014 and was set to suffer the same fate this time around.
Shah told the leaders on the first day of a two-day BJP national council meeting in Delhi that the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government had worked for the upliftment of socially and financially weaker sections.
“We have to resolve that we will not rest till the 2019 elections and we will again make Narendra Modi the prime minister of the country. We did not come to power to enjoy its benefits but we want to improve the lives of people and the country," he said.
The meeting, which is being held after nearly four years, was attended by all Union ministers, chief ministers, members of Parliament (MPs) and members of legislative assemblies (MLAs) belonging to the BJP.
General election is important for the people who benefitted from programmes of the government, said the BJP president.
“What is mahagathbandhan (grand alliance)? We had defeated it in 2014 and we will yet again defeat it this time. The BJP will win more seats in Uttar Pradesh than the previous Lok Sabha polls. There was a time when politics of the country was Congress versus all, but we are proud to say now it is Modi versus all political parties," Shah said.
Shah said there were no corruption charges against the Union government and that even the Supreme Court had found nothing wrong with the deal, in an apparent reference to the allegations made by Congress president Rahul Gandhi on the Rafale defence deal. “The workers of BJP have nothing to fear from these allegations. Even the Supreme Court said that there was no need for investigations because there were no wrongdoings," he said.
The BJP president pointed out that alleged economic offenders Nirav Modi, Mehul Choksi and Vijay Mallya had left the country after the NDA came to power.
“We want to assure the people that now chowkidaar is in power and the chowkidaar will bring back all these people. These people ran away from the country now because BJP is in power. Why did these people not run away when the Congress was in power?" Shah asked.
The BJP president blamed the Congress for the delay in the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya and assured BJP leaders that a grand temple would be built at the earliest. “We are trying in the Supreme Court that the temple is constructed at the earliest. We are trying in the Supreme Court that the case reaches its conclusion, but it is the Congress that is delaying the case," he said.