Political leaders who don't keep promises get 'beaten up' by people, says Union minister Nitin Gadkari

Mumbai: Union minister Nitin Gadkari on Sunday said political leaders who sell dreams to people but fail to make them a reality get "beaten up" by the public.

The minister, who handles a host of infrastructure-related portfolios in the Narendra Modi government, asserted he is a doer and delivers on his promises.

"People like (political) leaders who sell them dreams. But if these dreams are not realised, then they beat them up (politically), as well," Gadkari said, speaking at a function in Mumbai. "I am not the one who only sells dreams, but I 100 percent deliver what I talk about."

Gadkari, a former BJP president, also spoke about his stint as Maharashtra's public works department (PWD) minister when the Shiv Sena-BJP government was in power (1995-99) in the state.

Political leaders who dont keep promises get beaten up by people, says Union minister Nitin Gadkari

File image of union road transport minister Nitin Gadkari. PTI

"Mediapersons in Mumbai know what kind of a person I am as they have seen how I complete projects. They do trust me," said the 61-year-old politician from Nagpur.

"People used to laugh at me when I, as PWD minister, used to claim that I was going to build over 50 flyovers in Mumbai and bring down the travel time between Mumbai and Pune to merely two hours (via the 91-kilometre expressway).

"I was ridiculed but I proved them wrong and completed every project I had promised," Gadkari said.

At the function, Bollywood actor Isha Koppikar joined the BJP and was made working president of the party's women's transport wing.

In December, Gadkari said at an event in Pune that leadership should own up to defeat and failures. The remarks had come days after the BJP's defeat in the Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh Assembly elections.

As the comments created a controversy, Gadkari said his statements had been twisted and alleged "there was a sinister campaign by some Opposition parties and a section of the media to twist" his comments and "draw politically-motivated inferences to malign" him and his party.

At the valedictory function of the annual Marathi literary meet at Yavatmal on 13 January, Gadkari said politicians should not interfere in other fields.

The meet was embroiled in a controversy after an invitation to writer Nayantara Sahgal was withdrawn apparently under pressure from a political party.

Without making a direct reference to the row, Gadkari had said, "Politicians should learn not to interfere in other fields. People who are in universities, educational institutes, literature and poetry, they should be dealing with their (respective) areas."

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Updated Date: Jan 28, 2019 08:16:00 IST

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