NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said the Lok Sabha election results on 23 May will be the first step toward ending the rule of West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee.
Addressing Banerjee as ‘Didi’, the PM said that she was nervous and angry because she has realised that the Trinamool Congress (TMC) is losing ground in the state. “Didi will get the first jolt on 23 May, it will be the first step toward ending her government in West Bengal. Didi is nervous and angry. We will identify the cadre of Trinamool Congress who are threatening our daughters," Modi said at a public meeting in Purulia on Thursday.
Talking about the state government, Modi alleged that while Banerjee was busy trying to build the career of her family members, her ministers were involved in scams and the people of the state were living in fear.
“I am told Didi wants to slap me. I call you Didi, I respect you, your slap will become a boon for me. But you should have slapped your people who took away money of the poor in the chit fund scam," added Modi.
The political battle for West Bengal heated up after Banerjee reacted to the allegations made by Modi in his speech. The chief minister said that the PM should prove the corruption allegations levelled against the state government.
“I challenge you (PM) to prove your allegations that members of TMC are part of the coal mafia, I will withdraw all my 42 candidates. If you are lying, you have to hold your ears and do a hundred sit-ups before the public," Banerjee said at a public meeting in Bankura.
During his day-long election campaign, Modi also addressed a gathering in Uttar Pradesh’s Azamgarh, where he attacked the Samajwadi Party (SP) and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) alliance and the Congress. Modi said after seeing the unstable mahamilavat (adulterated) government for 20 years, people should know that such alliances only mean bad governance and instability. “We have got tremendous support from people for five phases. People should be careful of those who want a mahamilavat government. The mahamilavat government of Congress from 2004 to 2014 only led to scams and corruption," he added.
With just two phases of the general election remaining, attacks and counter-attacks between the Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have intensified.
Responding to Modi’s statements against members of the Gandhi family, Congress president Rahul Gandhi said that while Modi can continue to target former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, he must also talk about the corruption allegations in the Rafale scam and rising unemployment in the country. During a public meeting in Delhi on Wednesday, the PM had alleged that a naval warship was misused by Rajiv Gandhi for a family holiday.
“If you want to talk about Rajiv Gandhi and me, do it. But also tell the people about the steps you did not take in the Rafale issue, and why is unemployment rising in the country," said Gandhi at a public meeting in Sirsa, Haryana.
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