Raipur: Accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of “running away” from discussion on the issue of ethnic violence in Manipur, Congress President Shri Mallikarjun Kharge on August 13, 2023 alleged that Shri Modi’s comparison of the strife-torn northeastern State to peaceful Chhattisgarh was an insult to the people here.
“By comparing the violence in Manipur with Chhattisgarh, he has insulted the people here… Has any incident like Manipur taken place here? What had happened in Manipur, our women were raped, they were disrobed, their houses were burnt, and they have nothing to eat. Who created such a situation in Manipur? The Prime Minister did,” Mr. Kharge said in Chhattisgarh’s Janjgir-Champa district, where he was addressing a State Government-sponsored meeting under the Bharose Ka Sammelan (conference of trust) initiative. He added, “Why is the PM Afraid to go there, why didn’t he go? He is roaming around for the election, giving speeches. He came here to Chhattisgarh, went to Rajasthan, went to Egypt, travelled around the world in 100 days, but did not go to Manipur... Such is the Prime Minister and this Prime Minister always compares with Chhattisgarh. Chhattisgarh is so peaceful. It has a good government. It has done what it says for everything here… But these things are being spoken in the Parliament. So, see how they try to demean us.”
The Congress leader was referring to a statement by Prime Minister Shri Modi in July on the violence in Manipur. Naming two Congress-ruled States, the PM had said: “I appeal to all Chief Ministers, whether Rajasthan or Chhattisgarh or Manipur, that they strengthen all law enforcement for the protection of women.”
The Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, further said that the Congress wanted the Prime Minister to make a statement in Parliament on Manipur, but Prime Minister Modi was not breaking his silence on the issue.
“It is shameful that instead of discussing the Manipur violence and answering the Opposition’s questions in the Parliament, the Prime Minister was focused on cracking jokes over the Congress Party,” he said.
Taking a jibe at the BJP, Leader of Opposition Shri Mallikarjun Kharge said, “What have you done for the country? They have divided the country. They have done the work of dividing the whole country. They have done the work of dividing the society and wherever they go, they say one thing or the other. Instead, you need to give the account of the work you have done. The Bhilai factory here may have also come up during the time of Modi ji! We built AIIMS, we built engineering colleges, we built medical colleges, we gave jobs to lakhs of people by building big factories… while on the other hand, you are snatching away jobs. The jobs that Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru ji had given to the people in the public sector by building big factories in the public sector, you are snatching them all one after the other… you are privatizing them all. Adani, Ambani and there are other people too... only these two mostly are mentioned or people mostly talk about them... but there are many such chosen people, they have many of them... who they support from inside. Now they are selling airports, highways, ports. They are selling everything what we have prepared and then they have the tenacity to pose questions to us!
The Congress President also referred to the “continuous raids” by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and Income-Tax (IT) Department in Chhattisgarh, which goes to the polls later this year, and asserted that the Party and Chief Minister Shri Bhupesh Baghel would not be intimidated by such tactics employed by the Central government led by the BJP, which is also the main Opposition party in Chhattisgarh.
Praising the Chief Minister Shri Bhupesh Baghel for delivering on all the Party’s electoral promises, Shri Mallikarjun Kharge said that the Chief Minister had “Aladdin’s magic lamp”, one that had something to offer to all sections of society.
During the programme, the Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh launched a total of 1,043 development works worth ` 467.33 crores for the residents of the district, a statement issued by the government said.
While meeting was the first in the five poll-bound States, Congress President Shri Mallikarjun Kharge will be visiting over the next 15 days. This was his public meeting at Janjgir-Champa, a district dominated by SC communities.
At this event, Chief Minister Shri Baghel announced that jaitkham (structures sacred to the Satnami community) would come up in each block, and sarpanchs would get them constructed with the help of the gram panchayat.
State Congress President Deepak Baij said, ‘‘Bharose ke Sammelan served as the preview of the Congress State Government’s achievements and successes. The Programme was attended by the Congress President Shri Mallikarjun Kharge and Chief Minister Shri Bhupesh Bagel, AICC General Secretary Kumari Selja, Chhattisgarh State Ministers, AICC’s Office-Bearers and PCC Office-Bearers and several senior leaders from the State.