Under Modi, Indian democracy is at stake: Gowda

Former PM H D Devegowda speaks during an election campaign in Kadur on Thursday.

Under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Indian democracy is at stake. All secular forces should unitedly fight him, said JD(S) Supremo and former PM H D Deve Gowda.

Campaigning for the Congress-JD(S) coalition candidate (his grandson) Prajwal Revanna at the APMC ground, in Kadur on Thursday, he said that the prime minister had not responded to the woes of the state’s coconut growers.

Deve Gowda said that PM Modi had been underplaying the questions posed by AICC president Rahul Gandhi. 

“The JD(S)-Congress alliance was inevitable to oust autocratic Narendra Modi,” said Gowda adding that he and Siddaramaiah would carry out joint campaigns in Mandya, Mysuru and Chamarajanagar.

Speaking on the occasion, former CM Siddaramaiah said that the BJP had been cheating people with fake assurances. “BJP needs to be taught a lesson by voters,” he remarked.

“Where was ‘Chowkidar’ Modi when Vijay Mallya and Nirav Modi plundered the wealth of the nation and fled the country? The ‘chowkidar’ was shooting a film when Pulwama attack took place,” Siddaramaiah alleged.

He said: “Modi did not respond to the pleas by the all-party delegation which requested him to waive farm loans taken from nationalised banks. Instead, he waived loans availed by businessmen. He preaches patriotism but wishes Nawaz Sharif by going to Pakistan. Modi is the first prime minister who has lied the most “.

Siddaramaiah termed the parliamentary election ‘a war between BJP and secular forces’. He said that coalition candidates would win all 28 parliamentary seats in the state. He stated that the coalition government would release necessary funds for permanent irrigation projects in Kadur.

Former MLA Y S V Datta said that the occasion was historic as it had both Deve Gowda and Siddaramaiah on one platform. Both leaders are known for their foresightedness, he lauded.

Datta said that during Gowda’s tenure hundreds of villages in Kadur were upgraded under PMGSY. “Yeddyurappa who won the bypolls in 2010, did not keep up his promise of adopting Kadur. Siddaramaiah as an opposition MLA then had released over Rs 800 crore to Kadur taluk,” Datta said and urged the government to sanction Rs 840 crore under Gondi project for the rejuvenation of lakes in Kadur.

Beginning his speech, Siddaramaiah, instead of uttering the name of the district in-charge minister K J George’s; wrongly uttered: ‘Dharme Gowda’. However, he immediately corrected his mistake and mentioned George’s name.

When Siddaramaiah mentioned that he had come to Kadur many times earlier, somebody from the crowd asked him why he wasn’t in Kadur when Anand contested the elections. 

A furious Siddaramaiah shouted: “It was I who gave Anand a ticket. I did not have the time to come campaigning. Shut up! Or I will slap you”.

Continuing in a lighter vein, he later said that the BJP candidate from Hassan was with Congress earlier.

“Three days before he joined the BJP, he had assured that he would not quit Congress. I knew he was a ‘Kallyettu’ (‘lazy bull’ or fraudster)”, said Siddaramaiah

The crowd burst out laughing at his remark.

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Under Modi, Indian democracy is at stake: Gowda

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