PM Modi promises ‘real change’ in Bengal | India News

KOLKATA: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday promised Bengal “ashol parivartan” (real change) and an end to the “cut culture” to take the state back to its former glory if BJP won the assembly polls. Modi, who reached Bengal from Assam, addressed a rally in Chinsurah in the Hooghly industrial belt across the river from Kolkata and left after inaugurating the Dakshineswar-Noapara stretch of the north-south metro.
In his speech, he focused on infrastructure and corruption, accusing Trinamool of holding up one (infra development) and promoting the other (corruption).
The Prime Minister also promised that the BJP would carve out a “sabka sath, sabka vikash” model minus the state government’s appeasement politics. “People had to move court after the government stalled Durga Puja immersion because of vote-bank politics. Such things will not happen,” he said.
“People have made up their minds for parivartan. But parivartan is not only about change of governments. We will bring about ashol parivartan,” he said at the Dunlop Sahaganj Maidan. “Tolabaji (extortion) by TMC has reached such a high that one cannot even rent space without paying a cut. Bengal is in the grip of syndicates. People are getting poorer by the day even as the Trinamool is flourishing,” he added.
“We took up the scheme to provide piped drinking water in each village to help women. We gave Rs 1,700 crore to Bengal for this project, but the state government has utilised only Rs 609 crore so far. Only nine lakh households have been benefited out of the targeted two crore,” he said. Women have been the focus of many of TMC’s recent campaigns and the state government’s social-welfare schemes.
Modi spoke of the time when people from across the country came to the Hooghly industrial hub to work. “Families in different parts of eastern India used to sing songs about the new stuff menfolk would bring home from this place. It has reversed now,” he said.
Boosting infrastructure — highway, railway, airway — at the right time was the key to development, said the Prime Minister. “We have allotted huge money for upgrading highways, widening railway tracks and railway electrification. The new metro services will connect Kolkata, Howrah, Hooghly and North 24-Parganas. The dedicated freight corridor for the east will benefit Bengal. Kishan Rail from Shalimar to Maharashtra will enable Bengal sell fish and vegetables to markets in Maharashtra,” he added.
BJP was committed to giving due respect to Bengal’s intellectual tradition, the Prime Minister said, mentioning Ramakrishna Paramhansa, mathematician Radhanath Sikdar and philosopher Bhudeb Mukhopadhyay and slammed the ruling Trinamool for the “lack of upkeep” of Chinsurah’s Bande Mataram Bhavan, “where Bankimchandra Chattopadhyay conceived Bande Mataram”.

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