Modi, Rahul engage in verbal duel

2017 polls: No support can save Akhilesh from BJP storm, says PM

Modi, Rahul engage in verbal duel

 Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi engaged in a fierce verbal duel on the electoral battlefield in Uttar Pradesh on Sunday.

Modi, who addressed an election meeting at Aligarh, said that Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav had “embraced” Congress in the forthcoming Assembly polls in the state for his “survival”.

“A BJP storm is blowing in UP. Akhilesh has embraced the Congress to save himself from being uprooted just as someone tries to cling to a pillar during a storm,” the prime minister said, adding that no “support” would be able to “save” Akhilesh from the “BJP storm”.

He said that his opponents had united to prevent the BJP from having a majority in the Rajya Sabha. “They (opponents) know that if the BJP gets majority in the Upper House, the government will make tough laws to deal with corruption,” he said.

A little later, Rahul, while addressing an election meeting at Kanpur with Akhilesh, said that the prime minister appeared to be worried since the Samajwadi Party and the Congress formed an electoral alliance in the state.

“The smile has vanished from Modiji’s face after we (Rahul-Akhilesh) came together, and when he (Modi) is worried, he looks for new terminologies,” he said.

“Our alliance is for the future of the state. The youth of Uttar Pradesh see their future in it and Modiji is worried because the youth are angry,” Rahul said.

He also referred to BJP’s defeat in Bihar Assembly elections and said that the saffron party would meet the same fate in Uttar Pradesh also. “Modiji has stopped uttering the word Bihar after his defeat. He will stop uttering UP after his defeat in the forthcoming Assembly polls in the state,” the Congress leader said.

“Modiji thinks that he is the only person in the country and the world who knows everything. He thinks that the people of India will accept whatever he says. He will know the truth after the polls,” Rahul remarked.

Modi invokes Ambedkar

In an apparent bid to woo Dalits, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday invoked B R Ambedkar and said that his government has given the respect due to the Dalit icon, who had been used by some parties as a “vote bank”, DHNS reports from Lucknow.

Modi said that the Centre plans to develop five places associated with Ambedkar as pilgrimage centres under the name “Panchteerth”.

The five places include Ambedkar’s birth place at Mhow in Madhya Pradesh, the place he studied at in Nagpur, his house in Londo, Mahaparinirvana Sthal in Delhi and Chaitya Bhoomi in Mumbai.

The BSP was quick to dub Modi’s love for Ambedkar a sham.

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