Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Monday simultaneously addressed people in 53 places across the 26 districts in the state through 3D projection technology, raising issue of Gujarati asmita (pride) and accusing Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of playing the minority card and Sonia Gandhi of spreading lies.
With campaign deadline for the first phase of polls coming to end Tuesday evening, this was Modi’s last night address to people in 87 constituencies in Saurashtra and South Gujarat that go to polls on December 13.
“What PM and Madam Sonia said has defamed Gujarat. It is injustice to Gujarat. Let’s take revenge through election,” Modi said, referring to PM’s remarks a day earlier that minorities were unsafe in Gujarat and standard of education in Gujarat was poor. Gandhi had said farmers in the state were not getting power.
The 3D address was telecast at venues in industrial clusters like Vatva, Ankleshwar, Varacha, Morbi and coastal belts of Saurashtra, besides places in central and north Gujarat, including Modi’s hometown of Vadnagar. “During the Congress rule in Gujarat, there were riots in which innocents were killed. Half of Gujarat used to be under curfew. For the past 10 years, Gujarat is curfew-free and riots-free,” he said.
In his address that lasted nearly an hour, Modi appealed to people, especially women, to vote so that Gujarat could record heavy polling.
In Rajkot, people thronged Radhe Krishna Nagar, the venue where his speech was telecast live.
In Modi’s hometown of Vadnagar, a 2000-strong crowd gathered at Naveen Sarva Vidyalaya on Badalpur road to hear him.
“Through this (3D) technology, it feels as if Modi is here. He has brought great pride to his hometown. I am a resident of a small village here but I have electricity all the time to run my plastic business. When I visit other cities like Mumbai, I get special treatment because of Modi’s image today. Many people feel they should also have a CM like him,” says Bhavesh Kumar.
Among the audience was one Deepak Jamnadas Sheth, who has studied with Modi in the same school (B N High School) at Vadnagar. “There is a sea change in the way he speaks today. He has brought immense progress to Gujarat. We are proud of him,” he says.
At Vatva in Ahmedabad, a 1,000-strong crowd gathered to listen to the CM.
Earlier in the day, Modi addressed a rally at Karjan in Vadodara where he accused the PM of sowing “communal seeds” in the state by saying that the minorities felt insecure under him in Gujarat. “The people of Gujarat will not forgive this,” the CM said.
First phase campaigning ends today, Advani to address three rallies
BJP veteran and Gandhinagar MP L K Advani will address three election rallies in different parts of the state on Tuesday, the last day of canvassing for the first phase of polls to be held on December 13.
A BJP release issued Monday said his first meeting will be held at Savarkundla in Amreli district, followed by a public meeting in Ranip area of Sabarmati constituency. His last rally will be held in Naroda constituency.
Chief Minister Narendra Modi will address nine public meetings tomorrow, three of which will be held in Ahmedabad city, the release added.