Modi harps on ‘vikas’ but invokes Ganga, Lord Shiva

Varanasi/ New Delhi, DHNS/PTI: In an apparent bid to counter the Opposition charge that the BJP was trying to push the Ram Temple issue to gain mileage in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said at a public meeting here that people would vote on the issue of development even as he invoked Ganga and Lord Shiva and ended his speech by chanting ‘Har Har Mahadev’ (slogan hailing Shiva). 

Addressing a public meeting here after dedicating and inaugurating several schemes for his Parliamentary constituency of Varanasi, Modi said that the BJP government at the Centre and in the states were committed to develop the country.

‘’The nation wants politics of development.....people will vote on the issue of development..

“Vote bank politics will not work now,’’ the prime minister said.

Even though Modi showcased the works his government had undertaken for the development of Varanasi, he also referred to his recent visit to Kedarnath and said that he considered himself to be ‘’fortunate that he got an opportunity to have darshan of Kedarnath and Kashi Vishwanath’’.

Folded hands

Earlier, while dedicating the Inland Waterways Terminal on Ganga here, Modi paid respect to the holy river with folded hands from the terminal.

The opposition parties have accused the BJP of raking up the Ram Temple issue to gain mileage in the next LS polls. 

The prime minister dropped hints that the BJP would be including the development of his Lok Sabha constituency in its agenda in the next general elections in 2019.

‘’Varanasi will show the country how development can transform a region....how we can achieve the targets within a time frame....it will emerge as a hub of nature, culture and adventure,’’ he remarked. It was Modi’s 15th visit to the temple town after being elected to Lok Sabha from here in 2014.  

PepsiCo first to use

 Food and beverages major PepsiCo India on Monday said it has become the first company to use the country’s inland waterways for container movement by transporting products from its plant in Kolkata to Varanasi.

Commenting on the development, PepsiCo India President and CEO Ahmed El-Sheikh, , who was present on the occasion,, said: “This is a significant milestone in the development of the inland waterways and we believe this can be a huge enabler for the consumer goods industry.”

The consignment had set sail from Kolkata in the last week of October.

PepsiCo India had shipped 16 containers, equivalent to 16 truckloads of products, as part of the pilot project on National Waterway 1.

These products, made at PepsiCo India’s snacks plant in Kolkata, would be further distributed to various markets from Varanasi, the company added.

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Modi harps on ‘vikas’ but invokes Ganga, Lord Shiva

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