NEW DELHI Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday attacked the Congress by saying that if Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel was made the first Prime Minister of the country, the issue of Jammu and Kashmir would have been resolved.
Taking a potshot at the Congress for remembering Patel only during the Gujarat Assembly elections, Modi said the grand old party forgot to mention the late leader during the Lok Sabha polls.
Addressing the Rajya Sabha as part the motion of thanks to President Ram Nath Kovind’s address to the Parliament, Modi said: “We think that if Sardar Saheb (Vallabhbhai Patel) was made the first Prime Minister of India, the issue of Jammu and Kashmir would have been resolved.”
Modi further said even the problems existing in the villages today would have been resolved had Patel been made the first Prime Minister.
“Sardar Patel was a true Congressman. He was made the first Home Minister of the country. But I am surprised as the Congress remembers him only during the Gujarat elections when his pictures become visible in the party’s posters. But during the Lok Sabha elections, his photographs are not seen in any of the party’s posters,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister also asked the top Congress leadership to pay tribute to Patel by visiting the Statue of Unity in Gujarat.
“I request the one top leader of the Congress to visit the Statue of Unity, which we built in Gujarat as a mark of respect to Sardar Patel. I also request Ghulam Nabi Azad to spend a few days in Gujarat,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister then took a jibe at Azad, saying that he had a blurred vision. “I think Ghulam Nabi Azadji is having a blurred vision… May be he is seeing everything through political glasses. Ghalib said something for such people — ‘ta umr Ghalib ye bhool karta raha, dhool chehre pe thi, aaina saaf karta raha’,” Modi said.
Attacking the Congress for demanding ‘old India’, Modi said, “Congress wants its old India where the decision of a Cabinet was torn by a leader in a press conference, where an Indian Naval Ship was used as a personal taxi, where scams were visible everywhere. But the people are not ready to accept the old India.”
Modi was referring to the Azad’s remarks made in the Rajya Sabha on Monday. In his motion of thanks on the President’s addresss, Azad had said the Congress wanted the old India which had love, affection and culture and where a human being was not afraid of another human being.
It may be mentioned here that in 2013, then Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi had torn a Cabinet decision on bringing an ordinance to protect convicted MPs and MLAs while addressing a press conference. And in the run up to the Lok Sabha elections, Modi had alleged that the late Rajiv Gandhi used aircraft carrier INS Virat as a ‘personal taxi’ to ferry his family members