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Modi sounds poll bugle in Tripura: People trapped in ‘Manik’, they need ‘hira’

The Prime Minister, addressing an election rally in Manik Sarkar’s Dhanpur assembly constituency, urged the people to vote the BJP to power to transform Tripura.

india Updated: Feb 08, 2018 19:18 IST
Priyanka Deb Barman
Priyanka Deb Barman
Indo Asian News Service, Sonamura (Tripura)
Tripura assembly election,Narendra Modi,manik Sarkar
Prime minister Narendra Modi gestures during a BJP public rally ahead of state assembly election at Ranagamati in Tripura on February 8.(AFP Photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday exhorted voters of Tripura to throw out the Manik Sarkar government and give the BJP a chance, as he sounded the poll bugle in the northeastern state with the slogan “chalo paltai” (let us change).

Elections for the 60-member Tripura assembly will be held on February 18 and results will be declared on March 3. The Marxist regime of Sarkar is in power in the northeastern state for the past 20 years.

Modi played on the word Manik, which means gemstone in Bengali, and said that the people of the state should now get ‘hira’ (diamond).

“People of this state are trapped in Manik for 25 years that was devoid of development. Now, the time has come you should get ‘hira’,” Modi said at a public rally in Sonamura, about 60 kilometres from state capital Agartala. Sarkar’s Dhanpur Assembly constituency falls in the Sonamura sub-division.

Modi also played on the word hira to turn it into an acronym for “Highway, Internet-way, Roadway and Airway”.

He also offered three Ts -- trade, training and tourism -- to bring a change in the people’s lifestyle.

He attacked the Left government over different issues including the Rose Valley scam, a pyramid scheme that duped thousands of people of crores of rupees.

“Under his (Sarkar’s) white kurta there is a dark side. His government cheated people by giving poor wages when the people of other parts of the country got higher wages and the government employees got higher salaries,” Modi added.

He said the government failed to generate employment for youths, did not match the central pay scale for its employees and failed to ensure security of women.

“If you want to punish the Left rulers for two-decade-old misgovernance, you should punish them by pressing the button on lotus (the BJP’s poll symbol), “ the Prime Minister said.

Modi said former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vakpayee took the initiative to develop the northeastern region by dedicating allocation of funds from each ministry.

Modi listed the schemes of his government for the state, including connecting the state to Delhi through rail, sanctioning fund for modernisation of Agartala airport and launching the third internet gateway in Agartala.

“The entire country could be fully developed if the entire northeastern region is developed,” Modi said.

Modi later addressed another public meeting at Kailasahar, about 190 km from the capital.

Modi will visit the state again on February 15 to address a rally in Agartala.

(With agency inputs)

First Published: Feb 08, 2018 16:06 IST