Narendra Modi takes a dig at Cong on various issues

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Narendra Modi
Mumbai, Jun 4: Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Monday attacked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh accusing him of failing on the economic front to arrest the decline of Rupee vis-a-vis US Dollar. Addressing an award function here in the evening, he also charged that late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi had announced during a campaign in the North East that if Congress was elected, the administration would be run as per the Bible. "However, no secularists took objection to this statement," he said.

Modi said India's North East has a rich history of people who fought for the country's freedom against the British but claimed they were never honoured after the Independence. "Had their sacrifices been recorded and generations that followed read about them, things would have been different to a particular family for whom history had been changed," Modi alleged without naming the Nehru-Gandhi family. He alleged Singh had stopped making budgetary provisions for uranium exploration in North East after he had become the Finance Minister in 1991.

"Before 1991, these budgetary provisions used to be made. However, they were stopped once Singh became the Finance Minister. Later, when he became the Prime Minister, he ensured execution of policies that would favour the USA in carrying out uranium exploration," Modi alleged. The BJP leader said nuclear power was said to be safe and economically-viable and North East was the only place in the country where uranium is available in some quantity.

He said the Prime Minister has been representing Assam in the Rajya Sabha for several years but it was only in 2008 that he thought of a vision document for North East. Accusing the UPA government of 'lacking vision and planning for development', Modi said had the Centre thought of setting up hydro-power projects in the North East, electricity shortage in the country could have been minimised to a great extent. "Utilisation of the water resource in the North East would see the economy thrive," he said. Modi added it was only during the NDA rule that a separate ministry for North East was created. "Had the Vajpayee government lasted longer, it would have fulfilled the incomplete task of Sardar Patel of integrating North East into the national mainstream," he said.

Modi said he had proposed at a Chief Ministers' conference in Delhi that 200 police jawans from each of the North Eastern states be sent on deputation to Gujarat for two years. "They would have got exposure to the rest of the country outside North East and this would have strengthened the national bonding. Inflow of tourists from Gujarat to the North East would also have grown. But my suggestion is still to be implemented despite all other chief ministers agreeing to it," he said.

Modi charged the Centre with neglecting development of the border areas. "Ignoring it is an invitation to disaster. In the Rann of Kutch, it is very difficult to provide mobile telephones to BSF jawans because of the proximity to Pakistan, which could raise connectivity problems. I have taken up the issue with the Centre several times asking it why this problem can't be overcome with technology and satellites. It looks like they (Centre) can't think of doing good work," he said.

Earlier, Modi presented the O.N.E India award to Naban Atum from Arunachal Pradesh who has been working in villages bordering China. The award comprised cash prize of Rs one lakh, a memento and a trophy.

PTI

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