'Evil designs against nation will get befitting reply'

Prime Minister Narendra Modi. PTI Photo

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday asserted that his government has adhered to warrior king Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's principles of nationalism and national security, and possesses the strength to give a befitting reply to those having "evil designs" against India.

Addressing an election rally in Maharashtra's Satara district, Modi said just like Chhatrapati Shivaji, his government worked to strengthen the defence forces.

"In the last five years, the Centre and the state government have adhered to the values of Shivaji Maharaj. Nationalism and national security is our top priority. Those having evil designs against the country will be given a befitting reply," he said.

"We took decisions for national integration which the earlier governments did not have guts to take," he said.

Hitting out at the Congress and NCP, Modi said they opposed decisions taken for national security and integration, which caused a "deep hurt" to Satara district, which sends a maximum number of soldiers in the Indian Army.

"In the land of 'rashtra rakshaks' (protectors of the nation), there is no place for those who speak against the national interest. Your excitement, energy is making the opposition lose its sense," he told the gathering.

Modi said the Congress and NCP questioned the bravery of soldiers.

"They even spread mispropaganda against Rafale (fighter jet deal with France) and their stand on abrogation of Article 370 has hurt the people of Satara. They leave no chance to malign (Hindutva ideologue) Veer Savarkar," he said.

Congress and NCP do not understand the national sentiment.

"They have been taught a lesson in the Lok Sabha elections and now Maharashtra and Haryana will also punish them severely (in the Assembly polls)," he said.

Modi also said that NCP chief Sharad Pawar did not contest Lok Sabha polls from Satara as he knew which way the "wind was blowing".

He also said that it felt like a pilgrimage to visit Satara, the native place of his 'guru' Laxmanrao Inamdar.

Modi was campaigning for the BJP ahead of the next week's Assembly polls and the by-election to Satara Lok Sabha seat, from where it has fielded Udayanraje Bhosale, who recently quit the NCP. 

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