Any instance of violence brings shame to nation: Modi

By PTI Published on Jul 21, 2018 12:27 PM IST

New Delhi: Any instance of violence brings shame to the nation, Modi said in a reference to incidents of mob lynchings and assaults on women raised by opposition parties.

In his over 90-minute address, he asked the Congress to not bring politics in matters of national security and accused the opposition of insulting the Army by terming the surgical strikes in the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir as "jumla strikes".

He also accused them of insulting the Army chief. "Abuse me if you have to, but don't attack the armed forces", Modi said, adding "I will not tolerate this insult directed to our armed forces".

BJP members repeatedly chanted "Modi, Modi" as the Prime Minister spoke. The Prime Minister also targeted Sonia Gandhi for her suggestion that the opposition had the numbers to back its no-confidence motion and said it reminded him about her claim outside Rashtrapati Bhawan in 1999 that "we have 272" after the Vajpayee government had fallen by one vote.

"She destabilised Atal Ji's government and never formed one herself. Her claim proved hollow," he said.

The Congress has a history of destabilising governments of its rivals, he said, referring to fall of dispensations led by Charan Singh, Chandra Shekhar, H D Deve Gowda and I K Gujral.

"Two times, the Congress was involved in buying votes with the power of money", he said. The issue of non-performing assets (NPA) was the outcome of the "loot" of banks during the UPA rule when a chosen few were given loans with merely a telephone call."This was telephone banking during the UPA government", he said.

Banks had given away loans of Rs 18 lakh crore in 60 years, but it rose to Rs 52 lakh crore during the UPA's rule between 2009 and 2014, he said. Amid slogans raised by TDP members, he also spoke about their charge against his government over the issue of the Centre not giving special category status to Andhra Pradesh and said state Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu had agreed to a special package.

The NDA government is committed towards the development of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, he said, blaming the UPA government for the state's woes.

Modi said he had told Naidu that he had fallen in the YSR Congress trap and accused his party of making this into an issue due to its political rivalry with the Jagan Reddy-led party.

"I want to tell the people of Andhra Pradesh that we will keep working for them. We will do everything possible for the development of the state," he said.

TDP member Kesineni Srinivas, who had moved the no-confidence motion, scoffed at Modi in his comments following the PM's response. Srinivas, in his reply, said it felt like he was watching a great Bollywood blockbuster for one and half hour as it was full of great oratory, action and drama.

In his speech, Modi also referred to his government's efforts to get the triple talaq bill passed, saying it stood with the Muslim women in their quest for justice. India is seeing the record pace at which roads are being built, villages are being connected, i-ways are being built, railways development is happening, he said, adding that his government has done development without any appeasement. "Our mantra is 'sabka saath sabka vikas'", he said.

India has not only strengthened its economy but has also played a role in bolstering the global economy and has become sixth largest economy, he said.

The Congress, on the other hand, neither believed in the reports of renowned global bodies, in the RBI, in the Election Commission, nor the Chief Justice of India, he said.

Taking on the opposition over its criticism of his government on employment front, he accused it of spreading baseless information and claimed that nearly one crore people have got employment opportunities in 2017-2018.

Citing Employment Provident Fund figures, he said 50 lakh people have got job in the formal sector in nine months. He said the transport business alone has created 20 lakh jobs in the informal sector.

During the voting on the motion, Bhola Singh of the BJP was brought to the House on a strecher, while K C Patel, also BJP, was brought in a wheel chair.