'Was shocked': PM Modi on Rahul's remark in Puducherry on fisheries ministry

Updated on Feb 25, 2021 01:53 PM IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi also took a jibe at the Congress leader over a false Tamil translation by then-Puducherry CM V Narayanasamy.

PM Modi addressing public rally in Puducherry (ANI)
PM Modi addressing public rally in Puducherry (ANI)
By | Written by Karan Manral

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday addressed a public rally in poll-bound Puducherry. Speaking after inaugurating a slew of projects in the Union territory, PM Modi took jibes at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi over his remark on there being no fisheries ministry in Delhi, as well as a false Tamil translation by V Narayanasamy, who resigned as chief minister on Monday, after losing a trust vote.

Also Read | Nations that invest in healthcare will shine, PM Modi says in Puducherry

“I was shocked,” PM Modi said on Rahul Gandhi’s fisheries ministry remark. “Current National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government made the ministry in 2019 and the budget allocated for fisheries has grown more than 80% in two years,” he said.

Last Wednesday, while interacting with fishermen in Puducherry, Gandhi had called them ‘farmers of sea,’ and, comparing them with the farmers protesting against the three farm laws, wondered why there was a ministry for farmers, but not for fishermen. Following his remark, several Union ministers and leaders of PM Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) sought to remind the former Congress president that the ministry had already been established by PM Modi in the beginning of his second term, in May 2019.

Also Read | 'Farmers of the sea': Rahul Gandhi interacts with fishing community in Puducherry

Among those who responded to Gandhi were the current fisheries minister Giriraj Singh, who is also the inaugural holder of the office, as well as Textiles minister Smriti Irani, who had defeated him in his home constituency of Amethi in the 2019 general elections. The two ministers responded to the Congress leader in Italian.

Also Read | ‘No fisheries ministry in Italy’: Giriraj Singh’s reminder to Rahul Gandhi

Nevertheless, Gandhi reiterated his remark, this time in Kerala, on Wednesday.

Also Read | Rahul Gandhi reiterates claim about fisheries ministry, this time in Kerala

On the wrong Tamil translation by Narayanasamy, the Prime Minister said, “He lied to the people and the leader of their own party. How can they serve the people?” Last Thursday, Narayanasamy, while acting as a translator to Gandhi, wrongly translated a complain made by a fisherwoman in Tamil.

Also Read | Puducherry CM translates fisherwoman's complaint as a praise to Rahul Gandhi

“He (then-CM Narayanasamy) is here. Did he visit us during Cyclone?” the fisherwoman asked in her native tongue. Translating for Gandhi in English, the now-former Puducherry CM said that the woman was saying that he (Narayanasamy) visited the area during the Nivar Cyclone and provided relief to people. “This is what she is saying,” the Congress leader told Gandhi.

Meanwhile, PM Modi’s speech on Thursday also had a mention of how the central government wants to turn Puducherry into ‘B.E.S.T,’ i.e. business hub, education hub, spirituality hub and tourism hub.

Puducherry is likely to go to polls in April-May, along with the states of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, West Bengal and Assam.

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