Congress conspiring against Assam tea, must be punished, PM Modi warns voters

PM Narendra Modi in Assamese Attire

Addressing an election rally in poll-bound Assam, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said the Congress is conspiring against Indian and Assam tea so the party must be punished.

Speaking at a rally at Chabua in eastern Assam, Modi said the Toolkit campaigners are campaigning for defaming Indian and Assam tea and the Congress has supported them.

“A few days back, during its election campaign in Assam, the Congress had used photographs of tea gardens of Sri Lanka and Taiwan. The party also supported the Toolkit campaign against Indian and Assam tea,” the Prime Minister said during his second election rally in the north-eastern state in the last two days.

Modi on Thursday addressed his first election rally after the declaration of Assembly elections on February 26 at Bhatgram in Bengali dominated southern Assam’s Karimganj district.

Lambasting the Congress, Modi said when the party is conspiring against Assam tea, how does it dare to seek votes in the state. “Their (Congress) target is only the chair, not the nation’s and people’s welfare. The party is against the interests of lakhs of tea garden workers. Congress has no respect for talent. To win the elections, it can ally with anyone to realise its ambitions. It is the BJP government that would provide peace and stability in Assam,” Modi added.

“The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government is committed to increase the wages of tea garden workers. A Rs 1,000 crore package has been announced for the tea garden workers. More than 125 schools have been opened in and around the tea garden areas and welfare schemes were undertaken for the pregnant women and their children. The tea industry in Assam is playing a pivotal role in making an ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’,” he said.

“The Prime Minister said Assam has the potential to become India’s organic hub. Now farmers in Assam can directly export their produce globally. Through the Kisan rails, crops, fruits and fish can be supplied anywhere in the country. This is how the NDA government is empowering the farmers in the country.”

Modi said the waterways can boost global exports. “Four mega bridges have been constructed over the Brahmaputra river and work on other major bridges is going on.”

Saying that there is huge potential in Assam, Modi emphasised on becoming more ‘Vocal for local’.

“The Centre and state’s double engine governments can make Assam ‘Aatmanirbhar’.”

The Prime Minister said with the setting up of a large number of educational institutions and several other steps, the north-eastern region would be made a hub of higher education.

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and other senior Bharatiya Janata Party leaders were present at the rally.

BJP sources said Modi is scheduled to visit Assam several times to campaign for the party till April 3.

The 126-member Assam Assembly polls would be held in three phases. In the first phase on March 27, elections would be held in 47 constituencies, while in the second phase on April 1, polling would take place for 39 seats. In the last and third phase on April 6, elections would be held for the remaining 40 constituencies. The results would be declared on May 2.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said that there was “double neglect, double corruption” when the Congress led government was both at the Centre and in Assam, but now the BJP’s “double-engine government” will make the state “Aatmanirbhar”.

Expecting BJP’s retaining power in Assam, Modi announced “dusribar BJP Sarkar, dusri bar NDA Sarkar and dusri bar double engine Sarkar”.

Addressing an election rally at Bokakhat in eastern Assam’s Golaghat district, Modi said that the Congress identifying itself as a secular party, but to grab the chair (government), the party forged electoral alliance with the communal forces in Assam, West Bengal and Kerala.

Saying that the Congress’ “five guarantees” are fake and false promises, he said that after ruling Assam over 50 years the party has to make “jutha (fake) assurances” and making alliance with the communal party.

“Congress means confusion, uncertainty, violence and separatism, blockade and agitations and Congress means corruption and fake guarantee,a the Prime Minister retorted and said that the party has no vision it’s friendship with only chairs. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi accompanied by senior central and state leaders on Saturday released the election manifesto in Guwahati promising “five guarantes” if voted to power.

The “five guarantees” include restarting the process of National Register of Citizens (NRC), repeal the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), Rs 365 daily wage to tea garden workers, five lakh jobs in five years, Rs 2,000 per month allowance to housewives and 200 units free electricity per household.Saying that over Rs 40,000 crore being invested for Assam’s gas and oil projects, the Prime Minister said that projects are now underway for the compressed natural gas (CNG) for the vehicles and piped natural gas (PNG) for cooking in thousands of households.

“From the bamboo, ethanol (an organic chemical compound) would be produced in Assam. Since British rule bamboo was in the tree category. After 70 years, the law has been amended to boost the bamboo based industries, plantations, value addition of bamboo and to empower the thousands of artisans who made thousands of items from the bamboo,” the Prime Minister said.

Before amending the law in 2017, the Indian Forest Act, 1927, placed bamboo in the definition of “tree”, besides palms, stumps, brush-wood and canes, and hence felling and transportation of bamboo required permit.

Promising the all-round benefit to the lakhs of tea garden workers in Assam after the polls, Modi said that the BJP government in the state after coming to power in 2016, twice increased the daily wages of tea garden workers while Rs 1,000 crore package was announced in this year’s central Budget for the tea garden workers.

Highlighting the sacrifice and contributions of Lachit Borphukan and other important personalities in Assam, the Prime Minister said steps were taken to remember Borphukan.

Borphukan had in 1671 led the Ahoms in the Battle of Saraighat, considered the greatest naval battle on a river, to victory over the Mughals. He died in April 1672, almost two centuries before the Indian freedom movement had begun.

Modi also accused the Congress of patronising rhino poachers, but the BJP government has curbed the rhino poaching and the poachers are put in jails, while the world famous Kaziranga National Park has been freed of encroachers.The Prime Minister’s Sunday’s election rally at Bokahat, from where Minister and Asom Gana Parishad (BJP ally) President Atul Bora is contesting, is the third poll rally in the northeastern state in the last three days.

Modi on Saturday addressed an election rally at Chabua in eastern Assam and on Thursday addressed his first election rally after the declaration of Assembly elections on February 26 at Bhatgram in Bengali dominated southern Assam’s Karimganj district.

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Arushi Sana is the Co Founder of NYK Daily. She was a Forensic Data Analyst previously employed with EY (Ernst & Young). She aims to develop a global community of knowledge and journalism par excellence through this News Platform. Arushi holds a degree in Computer Science Engineering. She is also a Mentor for women suffering from Mental Health, and helps them in becoming published authors. Helping and educating people always came naturally to Arushi. She is a writer, political researcher, a social worker and a singer with a flair for languages. Travel and nature are the biggest spiritual getaways for her. She believes Yoga and communication can make the world a better place, and is optimistic of a bright yet mysterious future!

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