Those giving backdoor entry to Medha Patkar have no place in Gujarat: Amit Shah
Union home minister Amit Shah said he would like to ask the youth of Gujarat if they would allow those who opposed the Narmada project as well as the development of Gujarat to enter the state.
Union home minister and senior BJP leader Amit Shah on Sunday said some people were trying to give activist Medha Patkar, who had opposed the Narmada project, a backdoor entry into Gujarat politics.
Targeting Aam Aadmi Party (AAP)'s national convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, Shah, who is in his home state that is set to see Assembly elections in a few months, those who want to bring Patkar should be stopped right here as there is no place for those opposing Gujarat.
Patkar, the founder member of Narmada Bachao Andolan had opposed the Narmada dam project and led a long fought for rehabilitation of those displaced by the dam. She was fielded by the AAP from Mumbai's North East seat in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. The Kejriwal-led party has set its sights on Gujarat, besides a few other states as the 2024 general election nears and has launched an aggressive campaign in recent days.
Addressing an event in Ahmedabad, Shah said, "These days, some people have made a new start to give Medha Patkar, who opposed the Narmada project, a backdoor entry into Gujarat politics. I would like to ask the youth of Gujarat if they would allow those who opposed the Narmada project as well as the development of Gujarat to enter the state."
"Those who want to bring Medha Patkar, who opposed Gujarat and our lifeline Narmada project and did not let go of any chance to defame Gujarat on every possible forum, should stop here itself. There is no place for those opposing Gujarat," Shah said.
The Union minister said he had trust in the people of Gujarat, adding that those who had opposed the state will never be accepted by them. Shah was speaking at the inaugural function of the 36th National Games being hosted by Gujarat.
He further said that under the leadership of Narendra Modi, who was chief minister of the state, Gujarat had developed in different spheres in the last 20 years, setting parameters that perhaps cannot be broken in the coming decades.
"All this happened because Modiji took Narmada water till Khavda in Kutch. Had Modiji not come to Gujarat as Bhagirath (a mythological figure credited with bringing the Ganga on Earth) and had Narmada water not carried till Kutch, then this development would not have been possible," said Shah.
At a recent function in Bhuj, Gujarat chief minister Bhupendra Patel had called Patkar an "urban naxal", a term often used by some segments of the political spectrum to describe Maoist sympathisers and certain social activists.
(With inputs from agencis)