A day after President Ram Nath Kovind announced the appointment of Narendra Modi as prime minister for a second term, Modi addressed a massive rally in Ahmedabad, and thanked the people of Gujarat for handing a "record-breaking" mandate to the Bharatiya Janata Party.
The prime minister spoke at length about his political career in Gujarat before taking up the post of the prime minister. He said, "In 2014, people outside the state did not know much about who I was. But the people certainly knew about Gujarat. They saw the good condition of roads, water facilities and industries in the state. In a way, it was the glorious story of Gujarat that led to the mandate in the 2014 Lok Sabha election."
Both Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah, who spoke earlier, expressed grief over the fire at a coaching centre in Surat, in which 20 people died, mostly teenaged students. The prime minister said he is in constant touch with the state's governor regarding the incident.
Speaking about his roots in Gujarat, Modi said, "This earth has raised and nurtured me, and so after such a big event (result of the Lok Sabha election), I must come back to it. In a way, I have come here for your darshan...Such huge blessings are my strength. I have no words to express my gratitude to you."
The prime minister is scheduled to visit the BJP office in the Khanpur locality after the rally. Recalling his tenure as Gujarat's chief minister, he said, "In 2012, after the results of the Assembly elections in that year, I had come to this office for a victory rally. In fact, I have lived at this office for a long time. It was here that I learnt about the culture of being part of an organisation." As this article notes, when Modi moved from the RSS to the BJP in 1987, he began living in this office and stayed there till 1995.
He further said, "In 2014, I left Gujarat with much sadness to take up the role of prime minister. But the people of the state were confident, that if this person (Modi) goes to Delhi, he will do something good."
Speaking about the results of the recently-concluded elections, the prime minister said, "In this election, the predictions of many pundits failed. After the sixth phase of polling, I had said that we will get 300-plus seats. Many people made fun of me. However, the truth was that in the election, people voted to elect a strong government. The people voted for a prosperous country."
Modi also said, "Such a huge mandate also comes with a huge responsibility. This mandate is an opportunity to restore the place that the country had in ancient times. For this, it is necessary to break divisions and ensure that we have a country with one aim and mission."
On Sunday, the prime minister also visited his mother Heeraben Modi to seek her blessings.
'Whole of Gujarat behind Modi,' says Amit Shah
Earlier, speaking at the rally, BJP chief Amit Shah had said, "The result of the election shows that all the people of Gujarat are behind Modi...We can say with pride that water problems in the state have been solved, and the waters of the Narmada river reach every corner of the state. Corruption and crime have also ended."
Shah also spoke in detail about the Balakot air strike in the aftermath of the Pulwama terror attack. The BJP chief said, "The whole country was hoping that a leader would come who would give a fitting reply to terrorism. In the tenure of this government, the armed force entered the homes of the terrorists on two occasions and decimated them."
Saying that the respect for the country has increased under the Modi government, the BJP chief said, "Whether the prime minister goes to the United States, Sri Lanka, China or any other country, he is greeted with chants of 'Modi, Modi.'"
Modi will be administered oath of office for his second term along with his new Council of Ministers on 30 May, the President's Office said Sunday. He is the first BJP leader who has been elected for the second time after completion of his five-year tenure, a feat so far achieved only by two Congress leaders, Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi.
With inputs from PTI
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Updated Date: May 26, 2019 23:38:31 IST