Congress makes false promises, Sonia let marines go: Modi (Roundup)

BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi Monday launched a scathing attack on the Congress, accusing the party of making “false promises”, and on Sonia Gandhi over the killing of two Indian fishermen by Italian marines who were allowed to leave the country.

Addressing rallies at Itanagar in Arunachal Pradesh and Biswanath Chairali, Gogamukh and Sivasagar in Assam, Modi also held Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and vice president Rahul Gandhi responsible for the attacks on northeast people living in Delhi.

In his first halt at Itanagar, the Bharatiya Janata Party leader said the Congress was adept in making false promises.

He said the Congress promised five years ago, when it won the last general election, that it would bring down food prices and check inflation.

“They (Congress) say ‘we do what we say’. The Congress in 2009 promised to bring down price rise, but did it go down,” Modi asked. His question was answered by the crowd with a roaring “no”.

He then asked, equally loudly, if inflation has risen. The crowd responded with a thunderous “yes”.

This comes a day after Sonia Gandhi, in a rally in North Lakhimpur in Assam accused the BJP of “indulging in big talk”.

The Congress chief had also said her party fulfilled all promises of the 2009 manifesto.

Modi also launched an indirect attack against Sonia Gandhi over the 2012 killing of two Indian fishermen by Italian marines who were then allowed to leave India.

“At whose behest did the government in Delhi give the marines a chance to go back to Italy? Had the Supreme Court not taken a strong stand on the matter, the marines would not have come back.”

Modi held Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi responsible for the attacks on people from the northeast in Delhi.

“Children from the northeast are not safe in Delhi. In Delhi, a northeastern boy was killed,” he said, referring to the attack and subsequent death of Nido Tania, a young student from Arunachal Pradesh, in the capital.

Modi was speaking in Biswanath Chairali in Assam, near the Arunachal Pradesh border, over 250 km from Guwahati.

The BJP leader said attacks on students from the northeast pained him.

“I have expressed my apologies for the incident… I was told Sonia madam and Shehzada also came here. Did they say a single word over the incident? No, they are not bothered.”

Modi also said the Congress manifesto for the Lok Sabha election was packed with false promises.

“The Congress ‘ghoshana patra’ is actually a ‘dhokha patra’,” he said.

Leaders of both the parties are focusing on the northeast now as it will kick off the first round of the staggered Lok Sabha polls beginning April 7.

Five of the 14 Lok Sabha constituencies in Assam and one of the two in Tripura will see polling April 7.

In his last rally in Sivasagar in Assam, he said Congress was not interested in bringing back black money stashed in banks abroad.

“Why is Congress opposing the move to bring back the money? Because it belongs to them. They have been opposing it for the last 10 years and they have no intention of bringing it back,” Modi said during a rally.

“Everyone in the country has been urging the Congress government to bring back black money to India, but they are not taking any initiative though they have promised so in their manifesto,” he said.

“Now, in their 2014 manifesto, they have mentioned that they will bring back the black money. They have been in power for the last 10 years. What stopped them from bringing the money back till now,” he asked.