BJP candidate Narendra Modi focuses on “change” while addressing ex-servicemen at an election rally in Rewari.
Bhartiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi today addressed his first election rally after his coronation in Rewari destirict of Rajasthan. Former prime minister and the most famous of all leaders from BJP, Atal Behari Vajpayee, had also started his election campaign in 1999 from the same place.
During his 90 minute speech, taking a dig at Congress he slammed the “vote bank politics” done by politicians. By saying that those who call themselves “secular” should learn the meaning of secularism from the army, he made it more obvious.
He chose the dias of Revari to send a strong message to Pakistan that they need to spend more energy and time in dialogue making than taking every opportunity to war. “Pakistan now has a democratic government and it was hoped that they would walk on the path of peace. But the way our soldiers were killed, it doesn’t look like Pakistan wants peace,” he said.
Saying that war never solves issues which have been proven by the 60 years history of India and Pakistan he suggested the neigbour country to focus more on its problems like poverty, education and terrorism. He added that terrorism has been fuelled by wars and that Pakistan should stop promoting selective terrorism. He slammed the central government’s India-Pakistan strategy and called for more fruitful dialogues.
He was sharing the stage with former army general VK Singh and a large number of ex-servicemen were in the audience.
He is seemingly very well aware that supporting the defence forces and talking about Pakistan is always going to reap votes. Also, either he was sure of the leadership place he will hold or too well aware of the mood of the public coming to listen to him.
He raised the matter of pension and rehabilitation of ex-servicemen. He proposed a white paper on the One Rank One Pension idea for soldiers. Slamming the government on the issue he said that had the central government paid attention to to Vajpayee government’s original plan for the pension scheme, it would not have tangled the said scheme for the ex-servicemen. He also proposed jobs as firemen for ex-servicemen.
He praised the army for the help it provided during post trauma situation in Gujarat after devastating earthquakes of January 2001. He also mentioned his innovative way of using men in service to stop electricity theft in Gujarat and how as a child he had been heartbroken on being denied the chance to study in a Sainik school. “The insults meted out to soldiers has meant that youngsters today don’t want to join the Army. We need to change that,” he said.
The youth has always been romanticized with the idea of fighting the perpetual trouble maker Pakistan. Speaking about Pakistan and holding the central government responsible on the repeated attacks on the border means that Modi catches their attention.
Modi also showed his acumen of modern way of warfare by saying that “cyber war hone wale hain” (cyber wars are going to take place). He has previously too told this to the public in other rallies of his. Calling on youth for the future cyber war also added to his vote bank.
Obviously he doesn’t want to lose a single vote for the brave work he has started with BJP. Taking on the post of prime ministerial candidate means sharing the burden of whatever comes in front of them- success or failure. Rhis must be on his mind when he urged all the people present there to enroll themselves with the Election Commission of India. He said that if people want “a strong country and a strong government at the center” they should make sure that their family and friends have voter id cards and have their name on electoral rolls.
His energy and intensity during the speech focused on “uprooting the UPA government” will be difficult to match by the Congress and whoever it chooses to lead the party for 2014 general elections.
The Congress may be dismissing it as smoke and mirrors, but nonetheless it catches media attention giving Modi ultimately wide reach
As confessed by writer Aakar Patel in an article, “A campaign fought on the strength of a man’s personality will not change the dynamic of what will be as always a caste-based Indian election. Region, language and community will always be larger issues here than either communalism or development. Modi cannot change that, in my opinion, but I’ve been wrong about him before.”
Modi, for sure, is here to “change”.