Vadodara: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday hit out at the Congress for questioning the Election Commission (EC) for not announcing the poll schedule for Gujarat along with Himachal Pradesh.
The Congress has no moral right to question the Constitutional body, Modi said addressing a gathering in Vadodara.
On 12 October, the EC had announced Assembly poll schedule for Himachal Pradesh but did not announce the dates for Gujarat, only saying that it would go to the polls before 18 December.
This has been questioned by Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, senior leader P Chidambaram and some others in the Congress party.
"Some of them (Opposition) are worried why Modi is coming to Gujarat after Diwali. They can't say anything to me, so they are targeting the Election Commission," the prime minister said and asked the gathering, "You tell me, should I not come to Vadodara?"
To hit out at the Congress, Modi referred to the recent Rajya Sabha polls from Gujarat in which Congress leader Ahmed Patel won by defeating BJP's Balwantsinh Rajput.
"In the recent election, votes were counted and TV channels were showing who is the victor, but they (Congress) did something after which a recount took place in which they won," Modi said. "Those who won in the recount are now asking the Election Commission why Modi is going to Gujarat," he said.
"They do not have any moral right to ask this question to the Election Commission," Modi said.
The Congress has alleged that the NDA government had pressurised the EC to delay the announcement of Gujarat election schedule, so that the prime minister could offer sops to his home state before the model code of conduct came into force.
"EC has authorised PM to announce date of Gujarat elections at his last rally (and kindly keep EC informed)," said a sarcastic tweet by Chidambaram.
EC has authorised PM to announce date of Gujarat elections at his last rally (and kindly keep EC informed).
— P. Chidambaram (@PChidambaram_IN) October 20, 2017
Modi, who inaugurated or laid foundation stones for various projects in and around Vadodara, said, "They (Opposition) have never heard of or seen such development works, so they are finding it difficult to digest." He said on Sunday he laid foundation stones or inaugurated development works of Rs 3,600 crore whereas the budget of Gujarat government a few years ago was Rs 10,000 crore. "Before the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, one party held an internal meeting to decide their key poll promise. And what did they come up with? They announced that they will give 12 LPG cylinders instead of nine. Is this the best you can think of? "They just can't think beyond a certain limit. But yes, they were certainly capable of doing some other things....just have a look at newspaper headlines before 2014. Every day there was some news about scams," Modi said.
"Our government firmly believes that public money must be used only for development. Our government will provide all kind of help to the states which will give priority to development. But we will not give anything to those state governments which are anti-development," he said.
During his visit here, the prime minister inaugurated the Rs 100-crore City Command and Control Centre in Badamadi Garden, Rs 125-crore Janmahal city transport hub and multi-level parking, a Rs 160-crore multi-modal city transport hub and Rs 267-crore waste-to-energy processing plant.
Development boost for Vadodara. pic.twitter.com/yJB4PdiEd4
— PMO India (@PMOIndia) October 22, 2017
The other projects which he inaugurated or for which he laid the foundation stone included a Rs-166 crore water treatment plant, two flyovers worth Rs 265 crore, a Rs 55-crore deer safari park and a Rs 6-crore veterinary hospital.
Later, people lined up along the road in big numbers as the prime minister's cavalcade headed for the Vadodara airport from Navlakhi ground.
Updated Date: Nov 24, 2017 16:50:34 IST