Shivaji memorial will give India identity: PM Narendra Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi says demonetisation has country's support; attacks Congress for spreading rumours; said the mid-sea Shivaji memorial will begin an era of tourism in India
Appealing to "dishonest" people to respond to his fight against black money, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday warned those preferring to defy the country's law that the fight will continue till victory is achieved. "I invite you to accept the country's law and regulations. Please return to the system. We don't want to hang you, but I want to tell you that you will have to part with the poor's share (from your ill-gotten money)," Modi said at a large gathering, after laying the foundation for the Shivaji Maharaj Memorial and several other big ticket infrastructure projects in Mumbai.
"The time has come to destroy the dishonest. Very few people do this (financial malpractices) but because of them, crores suffer. They don't know that their troubles began when they went to the bank. They shouldn't think that they are sorted once they deposited their money or engaged bank officers in corrupt practices to turn their black money into white," Modi said, adding that the suffering of the common people will reduce after the post-demonetisation period of 50 days.
The family of the Maratha warrior king Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, were present at the event as well
He said the (dishonest) people who didn't fear him or his government should at least fear the might of the people who have elected a majority government at the Centre after many years. "Remember that the 125 crore-population of this country stands supporting me in this war against black money and corruption. The people are not ready to accept malpractice any longer. They want my government to continue working against corruption and black money," said Modi.
Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray, CM Devendra Fadnavis, union minister Nitin Gadkari and several others shared dais with the PM. Thackeray has been opposing the implementation of demonetisation and criticised Modi very often, though he said he did not oppose the decision per say. Modi also responded to the charge that people were unhappy over demonetisation. "Winning elections is taken as a proof that any government is doing good work. The people of Maharashtra have given the BJP a mandate in the recent civic polls and the result speaks for itself."
Without naming the Congress, Modi attacked the party that has ruled the country for several decades. "The people who have eaten malai (butter) for 70 years has done whatever possible to destabilise the demonetisation scheme. They scared people, spread rumours, but I must say that the people who we call illiterate did not succumb to the pressure tactics of handful leaders," he said while launching a scathing attack on Congress senior leadership.
(From left) Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, CM Devendra Fadnavis, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Nitin Gadkari at the event where Prime Minister Modi lay the foundation stone for the Shivaji Memorial on Saturday. Pics/Nimish Dave
Country, Mumbai, will change
Modi ridiculed adversaries who mock his government's tagline 'Desh badal raha hai (the country is changing)'. "Who says the country cannot change? I say it will change and grow and stand tall. I'm saying this on the basis of my three-year experience in the government," he said. Referring to the city projects he kicked off on Saturday, Modi said it was a historic day for Mumbai as the work on projects worth R1.6 lakh crore has started in one go. "The Fadnavis government will ensure these projects are completed in time. I'm happy that the state government is working tirelessly for the development of the city," he said, setting an agenda of a Mumbai makeover ahead of the civic polls.
He said the BJP's focal point was sustainable development, that will empower the poor and middle class. He paid rich tributes to King Shivaji saying that the mid-sea memorial will begin an era of tourism in the country. "Iconic structures give countries identity. The Shivaji memorial, too, will give us an unique identity," he said. The PM also plans to start the fort tourism pilot from Maharashtra.
CM slams memorial opponents
Fadnavis, who also spoke today, said 'the people who opposed the Shivaji Memorial, did not think of the future. "These people only live in the present. In the coming years, India will be known by the Shivaji memorial, which will be taller and more imposing than the Statue of Liberty," he said.
Clear coastal road: Uddhav
Speaking on the occasion, Thackeray requested the PM to give the BMC's pet project of the coastal road an environmental clearance. The appeal was a clear indication that the Centre has not been paying attention to the Sena-controlled infra project. The Sena chief also asked for handing over historic forts in the state to the government for care-taking saying that the central agency Archeological Survey of India, was not very serious with its work.
Incomplete projects yet to get govt nod
> Soyabean and cotton farmers are yet to receive compensation of nearly Rs 1,000 crore for crop loss due to drought last year.
> Government had to give Rs 143 crore grant to non-aided schools after a long court battle by these school managements. However, it finally sanctioned a R72-crore grant citing insufficient funds.
> Maharashtra cleared over 95 per cent of sugar cane dues payable. But, a few hundred crores are pending as arrears.
> Every year, the Central government, under National Rural Health Mission, releases funds for the treatment and medicines of Hemophilia patients. But, despite releasing the fund in May, the state health department hasn’t made medicines available to patients. Patients continue to struggle to get their life-saving drugs. The budget is of Rs 25 crore.
Source: According to various media reports
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Narendra Modi takes oath as Prime Minister of India again