Modi does U-turn, says voting for JD(S) is futile

Modi does U-turn, says voting for JD(S) is futile

After showering praises on JD(S) supremo HD Deve Gowda, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday launched a stinging attack on the regional party, predicting that the JD(S) was “certain to lose” the May 12 Assembly election. 

Modi had good words to say about Gowda at a rally in Udupi on Tuesday. Gowda returned the favour by praising Modi on Wednesday, which only fuelled speculation that the two parties were cosying up ahead of the polls. 

“We have seen poll pundits and surveys being clear about one thing: The JD(S) will crawl and end up in a distant third place. At no stage can the JD(S) form a government and defeat Congress, let alone shape Karnataka’s future. So, will any conscious voter make the mistake of wasting a vote on the JD(S)?” Modi said while addressing a massive crowd at Kengeri.

“No one will even ask about them. The JD(S) has committed a grave mistake by joining hands with highly extremist and communalist forces from other states,” Modi said.

This attack on the JD(S) surprised many in political circles. It could be seen as the BJP’s move to keep a distance from the JD(S), which the Congress believes is the saffron party’s ‘B’ team.

Modi then trained his guns on the ruling Congress. Predictions of a hung Assembly are the handiwork of the Congress, he claimed. “It only means that the BJP will form the government in Karnataka,” he said.

He tore into the Siddaramaiah-led Congress rule by listing out five ‘gifts’ Bengaluru had received in the last five years: From Silicon Valley to Valley of Sin, Garden City to Garbage City, Computer Capital to Crime Capital, Cosmopolitan Culture to Culture of Chaos and Startup Hub to Pothole Club.

“Should there be any delay in making a city smart, where there are smart citizens? This government has spent only Rs 12 crore and the remaining Rs 824 crore is lying idle,” he said. 

The prime minister also ridiculed the Congress’ election manifesto, in which it has promised to make IT in Karnataka a $300-billion sector and biotechnology a $50-billion sector.

“Look at their courage. Arrey, at least make sure your lie is believable. Is this how you play with your manifesto?” he said, adding that they were “impossible” promises.

Modi termed the Congress as a gold medallist in corruption. He said departments and ministers were competing with each other in corruption.

He credited the citizens and the BJP with stalling the steel bridge project. “It was actually a ‘steal’ bridge, under which cash was to flow like the Ganga and reach ministers’ homes.”