Lok Sabha Election 2019 Tracker LIVE updates: Speaking at Akhnoor in Jammu, Narendra Modi attacked the Opposition grand alliance, and said that the 'mahamilawati' leaders are bound to face 'mahagirawat' (great destruction).
Lok Sabha election 2019; pre-poll trends LATEST updates: Speaking at Akhnoor in Jammu, Narendra Modi attacked the Opposition grand alliance, and said that the "mahamilawati" leaders are bound to face "mahagirawat" (great destruction).
He also lashed out at the Congress for demanding proof of Balakot air strike. "After the strike in Balakot, the Congress leaders have been speaking such things that are not in the favour of the country. How can an individual find anything acceptable that is being lauded in Pakistan. They're asking for proof of the attacks, " he said.
Addressing a rally in Assam's Teok, BJP chief Amit Shah said, "Former prime minister Manmohan Singh was an MP for 20 years from Assam. However, the Congress failed to do any development for the region."
In an interview, TDP chief and Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu said, "I am not a contender for prime minister's post. I am being targeted by the BJP government through YSRCP leader Jaganmohan Reddy." However, he assured that on 23 May — which is the counting day, India will have a new prime minister.
Speaking at a campaign rally at Kaliabor in Assam, BJP chief Amit Shah on Thursday recited a list of the Narendra Modi government's achievements and vowed that if Modi is elected again, the BJP would ensure every infiltrator is removed from Assam.
On a day when it was widely expected that Shatrughan Sinha will join the Congress, it was announced by the party that he will join the party on 6 April. The actor-turned-politician has, however, met Congress chief Rahul Gandhi.
In a shorter speech than his Meerut one, Modi made it clear in Rudrapur that he is willing to rake up the Balakot air strikes in order to strike the nationalism chord when and where required. This was the second rally where he has called Rahul Gandhi "Pakistan's hero."
"The people of Uttarakhand have always been with me. This is a contribution which I never forget," he said. In the rally, he also highlighted the several measures taken by his government in the state.
PM Narendra Modi began the second of his three rallies of Thursday at Rudrapur in Uttarakhand by stressing that the Congress, which never thinks about the poor, sat on the Rafale deal for 10 years because they failed to make a profit out of it.
Modi uttered yet another invocation of the nation's Army in the beginning when he called Uttarakhand "the land of the brave, the land of sacrifices."
Reports have said that actor-turned-politician Shatrughan Sinha who has been with the BJP for a very long time, is now headed to meet Congress chief Rahul Gandhi. The party has promised "good news" on the Sinha front soon, say reports.
Minutes after Modi had stopped speaking at his first campaign rally at Meerut, Congress communication in-charge Randeep Singh Surjewala said in a press conference that the prime minister should apologise for comparing three political parties of the country to alcohol with his "sarab" jibe and also for "mocking the poor of the country."
"It is unfortunate that when we speak of NYAY, Mr Modi mocks the poor of the country. Previously he had mocked the poor of the country during demonetisation, this shows his true character," Surjewala said.
There is little that Modi did not speak on, when it came to issues at the Meerut rally. He combined the 'sa' of Samajwadi Party, the 'ra' of RLD and the 'B' of Bahujan Samaj Party together form 'SARAB'. The acronym, it is understood, stands for alcohol.
The prime minister spun his full repertoire of rhetorics for repeated slams on the Congress, the SP-BSP alliance and critics of his government. He, however, did give a new spin to the old 'saabka saath, saabka vikas' slogan and instead said 'saabka saath, saabka hisaab.'
He also touched upon the safety of women, the respect accorded by his government to idealogues Chaudhary Charan Singh and Deenbandhu Chhoturam, the allegedly false promises made by Indira Gandhi ('gareeb, gareeb hi rehe gaya') and the numerous schemes brought by his government.
"If someone goes to the theatre to see a play, he or she expects drama, new sets. Sets is a common term in theatre. Some people who were confused, thought I meant theatre 'sets' when I said 'A-SAT'," Modi said, taking a dig at Rahul Gandhi over the latter's World Theatre Day snub of the PM's Mission Shakti announcement yesterday.
India has decided, phir ek baar Modi sarkar, Narendra Modi said at his first rally in Meerut on Thursday. He kicked off the rally by remembering the Chaudhary Charan Singh and saying that he has followed in the leader's footsteps in prioritising farmers over all others.
Speaking before Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Meerut, UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath repeated the selfsame chant of the BJP, 'Modi hain toh mumkin hain' and said Modi has been synonymous to development by now.
Fresh off the controversial speech on Mission Shakti — which has also attracted EC’s scrutiny — after India's launch of an anti-satellite weapon on Wednesday, the prime minister will speak in rallies at Meerut in Uttar Pradesh, Rudrapur in Uttarakhand and Jammu in Jammu and Kashmir.
A meeting has begun at Congress chief Rahul Gandhi's residence between the party brass and its Bihar leaders. This comes amidst reports that discontent is brewing between the Congress and its Bihar ally, the Rashtriya Janata Dal over seat-sharing.
Reports say the Congress high command is upset with the allocation of certain seats and some Congress leaders have suggested calling off the alliance.
Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy called the raids of JD(S) minister Putturaju's house the "real surgical strike".
"This is out in the open through I-T raids. The constitutional post offer for I-T officer Balakrishna has helped the PM in his revenge game. It is highly deplorable to use government machinery, corrupt officials to harass opponents during election time," he said.
In a predawn swoop Thursday, Income Tax officials along with CRPF personnel carried out raids at the residences of Karnataka Minor Irrigation Minister CS Puttaraju and his nephew.
Speaking to a private news channel, JD(S) leader Puttaraju said three teams of Income Tax officials and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel carried out raids at his Chinnakurli residence in Mandya and his nephew's house in Mysuru.
The development came a day after, Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy raised fears about possible raids on Congress and JD(S) functionaries in the state.
Thursday promises to be a high octane day as far as developments in the road to the 2019 Lok Sabha elections is concerned. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hit the election trail for the first time since the dates of the election were announced on 10 March.
Modi's speech has also invited censure from Opposition parties which have questioned the timing of the speech and also alleged that Modi has chosen to dramatise the achievement for polltime gains.
TMC chief and West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee had said that the TMC will approach Election Commission to file a complaint on the speech.
It is, however, up to the Election Commission to interpret it in that manner. Modi did not explicitly turn the speech into a poll pitch, but the BJP leadership did pat Modi’s back for the success of the mission. The party’s social media team has also been strategically pointing out that Modi deserved credit for having the ‘courage’ to give a go-ahead for the project, something they allege that the previous UPA government stopped short of. The poll code does bar the ruling party from using the government’s achievements in a way to further political interests.
For now, the Election Commission has sought an active transcript of Modi’s speech from the government. A committee headed by the Deputy Election Commissioner Sandeep Saxena will examine the prime minister's address on Mission Shakti for possible Model Code of Conduct violation.
BJP chief Amit Shah, meanwhile, will address rallies at Koliabor and Teok in Assam's Jorhat district in a daylong trip to the state.
In Bihar, the BJP will be losing its longtime member, actor-turned-politician Shatrughan Sinha, to the Congress on Thursday. Sinha is likely to be fielded from the Patna Sahib seat in Bihar, which he currently holds.
Although not all is okay within the Congress either in the state of Bihar. Amidst reports that discontent is brewing between the Congress and its Bihar ally, the Rashtriya Janata Dal over seat-sharing, Rahul Gandhi will meet his party's Bihar unit to finalize alliance details.
Reports say the Congress high command is upset with the allocation of certain seats and some Congress leaders have suggested calling off the alliance. Rahul's Bihar meeting will come on a day when he will hold a whopping five roadshows at Jagadhri, Radaur, Ladwa, Indri and Karnal in Haryana.
Meanwhile in Uttar Pradesh, Rahul's sister, newly anointed Congress general secretary for Uttar Pradesh, Priyanka Gandhi, indicated on Wednesday that she would be open to contesting the 2019 election “if the party wants” her to.
Akhilesh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party will release its 2019 Lok Sabha election manifesto on Thursday. The party manifesto will focus on jobs and in what is being considered a very youth-oriented poll plank, the Samajwadi Party will form a youth commission to help formulate policies.
In Karnataka, meanwhile, Putturaju claimed that CRPF personnel were brought from various parts of the country to carry out the raids.
"Three teams of I-T officials and CRPF soldiers comprising eight soldiers carried out raids at my Chinnakurli residence in Mandya and my nephew's residence in Mysuru," Puttaraju told a channel. The minister said he was not afraid of the raids and instead, it had instilled confidence in him.
Lok Sabha elections will begin on 11 April and continue for over a month till 19 May across seven phases, followed by counting of votes on 23 May, the Election Commission announced Sunday, kick-starting a mega electoral battle where the BJP will pitch for a re-election of the Modi government amid the Opposition's efforts for a united fight to unseat it.
The polling will be held on 11 April, 18 April, 23 April, 29 April, 6 May, 12 May and 19 May for 543 Lok Sabha seats across the country in which nearly 90 crore voters would be eligible to vote, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora said. Assembly elections will also be held in Andhra Pradesh, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh and Odisha simultaneously with the Lok Sabha polls, the CEC said.