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HindustanTimes Thu,27 Nov 2014

Modi returns fire after Rahul's balloon jibe on Gujarat model

PTI  Bijapur (Karnataka), March 30, 2014
First Published: 22:09 IST(30/3/2014) | Last Updated: 02:06 IST(31/3/2014)

Hitting back at Rahul Gandhi for his "balloon jibe", Narendra Modi on Sunday said the Congress vice-president should focus on the nation rather than criticising Gujarat, which was declared "number one" by his mother Sonia Gandhi.

"If you think Gujarat model is a balloon, I want to ask if you trust your mother? The Rajiv Gandhi Foundation whose chairperson is your mother, that foundation had declared Gujarat number one. Do you see a balloon in your mother's talk? Does your mother also release balloons?" Modi said, addressing a rally here.

He said the people of Gujarat had rejected the Congress leaders' "balloon of lies" in the last three assembly elections in the state.

Tearing into the much-touted Gujarat development model, Rahul Gandhi had recently called it a "new heavier balloon" filled with "gas" and said it will also burst like the BJP's 'India Shining' campaign in 2004 and 2009.

Read: Modi slams 'shameless' Cong for fielding 'scam-tainted' candidate Chavan in LS polls

BJP's PM candidate Narendra Modi with BJP-Shiv Sena leaders during their joint election rally in Amravati (PTI Photo)

 "They (BJP) had made a balloon of 'India Shining' in 2004 and 2009. The people of India deflated it twice. This time they have blown a new, heavier balloon, the Gujarat model balloon filled with gas which will burst again," Gandhi had said, taking on the BJP PM candidate.

Attacking Rahul for criticising Gujarat model, Modi said that this Lok Sabha election was taking place to elect the PM and the government at the Centre, and not to form the government in Gujarat.

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"Shehzade these days talks about Gujarat...Is this election to elect the Gujarat government? Will its CM be elected? The election is to elect the Prime Minister...to form government in Delhi. Therefore, shouldn't the discussion be of the country's government?" Modi said adding that Congress should explain what it did in their ten years of rule.

Retorting to the balloon jibe, Modi said, "You, your party and 18 chief ministers came to Gujarat in 2002. And had spoken lies of such balloon. And your balloon of lies was not accepted by the people of Gujarat."

Read: Modi's 'AK' comment an insult to armed forces: Antony

Shiv Sena and BJP supporters during the Joint BJP Shiv Sena Loksabha election campaign rally at Amravati, Maharashtra (PTI Photo)

"You had done the same thing in 2007 and in December 2012. But you could not make the people of Gujarat believe your lies. People were seeing development and that is why people have elected BJP," he said.

Without naming Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Modi said that it was she who had declared Gujarat number one.

The BJP's PM candidate invoked Atal Bihari Vajpayee's regime and said that more youths were given employment during his six year tenure than what Congress has done in ten years of their rule.

Portraying a picture of doom for the Congress in the Lok Sabha polls, Modi said, "In no state will the Congress tally reach double digit...in some states they will not be able to even open account."

Modi said he does not think those who looted the nation can escape. "I am seeing the mood from Kashmir to Kanyakumari."

Read: If Modi becomes PM, China, Pakistan can expect a more muscular, tough India

Full coverage: The rise of Narendra Modi


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