POLITICS
04/12/2018 2:40 PM IST | Updated 04/12/2018 3:06 PM IST

Kartarpur In Pakistan Today Because Of Then Congress Leaders' Lack Of Vision: PM

"Correcting Congress's mistakes was my destiny," the Prime Minister said while referring to the recent opening of the Kartarpur corridor.

Hindustan Times via Getty Images
A file photo of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

HANUMANGARH — Stepping up his attack against the Congress, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday alleged that Kartarpur went to Pakistan at the time of independence because the party's leaders of that time had no vision and they did not respect the Sikh sentiments.

Referring to the recent opening of the Kartarpur Sahib corridor across India-Pakistan border, Modi said, "Correcting Congress's mistakes was my destiny."

Addressing an election rally, Modi used the corridor issue to attack the Congress and said the party will have to answer why this was not done 70 years ago.

"They (Congress leaders) could not see anything beyond the 'Rajgaddi' so Kartarpura went into Pakistan. The credit of the Kartarpur corridor goes to your vote," he said.

The foundation stone for the much-awaited corridor linking Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Pakistan's Kartarpur — the final resting place of Sikh faith's founder Guru Nanak Dev — to Dera Baba Nanak shrine in India's Gurdaspur district was laid last week.

Modi said Kartarpur is in Pakistan today because the then Congress leaders had no idea about the importance of Guru Nanak Dev and had no respect for Sikh sentiments.

The prime minister said that the country was paying the price of the mistakes committed by the Congress for its greed of power.

"The then policy makers of the Congress in the country were in a hurry to come to power. Partition happened and in that too several mistakes were made for which Kartarpur Saheb went into Pakistan," he said.

"A little bit of wiseness and sensitivity at that time would have ensured that Kartarpur, which is just 3 km away (from India), would not have been away from us. It was their lack of vision and sensitivity that they did not respect sentiments of Sikh community," Modi alleged.

He said the Congress was in power for 70 years, during which the country fought and won wars, but it could not make arrangement for prayers to be offered at Kartarpur Sahib.

"Why did Congress leaders commit such big mistake and injustice? It has come to my destiny to correct their mistakes. Its credit goes to your one vote and not Modi. Don't underestimate value of your vote," he said.

Modi said that people of the country have elected a prime minister who lives for the people, remains awake for the people and bows down to the people.

Talking about surgical strike, he said terrorists used to enter army camps without any fear and kill the soldiers during the previous governments, but India has now given a befitting reply by conducting surgical strike.

"Army showed the courage and its strength," he said.

Talking about farmers and their problems, Modi said his government wants to make farmers "energy givers" and asked them to install solar panels, use drip irrigation and other modern methods of farming.

"The naamdar does not know the difference between red and green chillies," he said, hitting out at Congress president Rahul Gandhi, whom he often refers to as a "naamdar" (dynast).

"If you tell him that farmers are getting high prices for red chilli as compared to green chilli, he'll say farmers should grown red chillies," he said, alleging that the Congress was responsible for the pain of farmers.

"I am saying this with conviction that had a farmer's child been India's first prime minister, had Sardar Patel been the first prime minister, farmers would not have been in distress today. It was due to 70 years of sins committed by four generations of one family," he said.

Attacking Congress over its farm loan waiver promises, the prime minister said that they talk about farmers' issues only when elections are near.

He said the Congress leaders tell lies to deceive gullible farmers of the country for its greed of coming into power.

In 2008, total debts on farmers of the country was Rs 6 lakh crore, but they waived off only Rs 58,000 crore, he added.

"The CAG report found huge fraud in loan waiver done during the Congress regime. People who got benefits were not farmers... ," he said.

Modi said the Congress leaders sitting in air-conditioned rooms were misleading people by devising strategies to oust the BJP from power, but they should come to Rajasthan and see the ground situation instead.

He exuded confidence that the BJP will form the government once again in the state, which goes to polls on 7 December.

The prime minister also offered greetings to the Navy personnel from the state.