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‘After Amethi, Rahul Gandhi will have to leave Wayanad as well’: PM

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NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi took aim at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, suggesting that the grand old party’s grip on power was slipping, and predicted a loss for him in the Wayanad parliamentary seat, akin to his defeat in Amethi in 2019. The “Congress’ sahabzade” will lose the Wayanad parliamentary seat this time, said the Prime Minister.
Addressing a crowd gathered for the candidates of Nanded and Hingoli Lok Sabha seats in Maharashtra, PM Modi portrayed the Congress as a hindrance to the nation’s progress, claiming they could not be trusted to work for the country’s advancement.

He insinuated at Congress’ lack of confidence by highlighting instances of leaders shifting from the Lok Sabha to the Rajya Sabha, allegedly to avoid electoral contests.
In particular, PM Modi singled out Rahul Gandhi, saying, “The Congress’ sahabzade sees a problem in Wayanad… after Amethi, he will have to leave Wayanad as well.” He further questioned the viability of the Congress party, suggesting voters would opt for ‘Viksit Bharat’ (developed India) over them.
“Will any voter waste their vote for such people? They will instead vote for ‘Viksit Bharat’ (developed India). Congress has been a barrier in development of farmers, poor and women… Can’t trust the party will work for the country’s progress,” he said.

Turning to alliances, PM Modi criticized the INDIA bloc, labeling them as a coalition of self-serving parties united to protect corrupt practices. He said that the alliance had already been rejected by voters in the first phase of elections.
“Congress survives on one family. But now the family can’t vote for the party candidate. For the first time, the family will have to vote for a non-Congress candidate in the constituency where they live because they don’t have a candidate,” PM Modi added.

Describing the INDIA bloc a grouping of selfish parties that have come together to protect their corrupt practices, he said the alliance has been rejected by voters in the first phase. The INDI alliance does not have a face to project whom the people see to entrust the country’s future to, he said.
They may claim anything, but the reality is that Congress leaders have accepted defeat even before the announcement of polls, he added. Without naming Sonia Gandhi, Modi said, “Some INDI alliance leaders have left the Lok Sabha and entered the Rajya Sabha as they don’t have the courage and confidence to contest elections. They are not even campaigning. Congress can’t find candidates as well.”
The INDIA bloc parties are contesting the Lok Sabha polls against each other in 25 per cent seats. “Can you trust such people?” he asked people at the rally.
“After June 4, an all-out fight will break out among the INDIA bloc members. You need to teach them a lesson in elections,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister also touched on the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, posing a rhetorical question on the fate of Sikhs from Afghanistan without the CAA.
PM Modi urged citizens to exercise their voting rights diligently, emphasizing the significance of their participation in shaping the country’s future. Despite the challenges posed by the weather and ongoing festivities, he stressed the importance of voting, drawing a parallel with the dedication of soldiers protecting the nation’s borders.
PM Modi also urged people to step out to vote in large numbers although there is heat, farmers are busy and the wedding season is on.
“Soldiers always do their duty of protecting the country’s borders irrespective of any season. By voting, you are not doing anybody a favour but securing the country’s future,” he said.
In a sarcastic comment, Modi said he wanted to boost the morale of the opposition party workers as 0they should also encourage voters to come out to vote. “You (opposition leaders) are sure to lose the elections. But, some day you will get a chance. Despite the imminent loss you must encourage voters to vote in large numbers,” he said. On the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, he asked that without the CAA what fate would have befallen Sikhs who came to India from Afghanistan.
(With inputs from agencies)

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