“Delhi toh humaari hai, ab Karnataka ki baari hai” : Modi in Udupi
UDUPI: A sea of humans donning Modi masks, chanting ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’ and ‘Vande Mataram’ flocked the MGM Ground in Udupi on the afternoon of May 1 as they eagerly awaited the arrival of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. As the gathering spotted a helicopter in the distance, the chants grew louder despite the sweltering heat.
A more than two hour wait under the sun didn’t seem to dampen the spirits of the crowd as they vociferously cheered the PM’s arrival. After being welcomed to the dais by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP from Udupi-Chickmagalur Shobha Karandlaje, Modi addressed the crowd with his signature chants of ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’.
Starting off his 40-minute long speech with a few greetings in Kannada, the Prime Minister asked the audience if they were in need of a translator. Surprisingly, the Kannada-fluent crowd booed at the translator and urged Modi to continue his speech in Hindi. Citing the historical and mythological significance of Udupi as a temple town, the PM intended to establish an emotional connect with the people.
Modi’s continual bashing of the Congress government’s rule in Karnataka instigated severe uproar from the crowd against the current situation in the state. The Prime Minister compared the success of the plans rolled out by the BJP government namely, Jan Dhan Yojana, and Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana, with the inabilities of the previous government at the centre. “Mere desh ke gareebon ki ameeri toh dekhiye! ” he exclaimed while stating that over 80,000 crore rupees were deposited while linking nearly 40% of the country’s population which had no access to the banking sector. He emphasized on the fact that 1.25 crore loans had been accepted from Karnataka under the Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana. He also took a jibe at the opposition: “In the Congress’ tenure, the country’s money was never utilised for the youth.”
Questioning the two dozen deaths of BJP workers in Karnataka, the PM urged the crowd to eliminate any form of violence from the city, state and country. He also accused the Congress of bringing the “ease of murder” culture in the peaceful state of Karnataka. Modi also made several appeals to the gathering in order to seek support and gain their vote for the BJP in the coming elections.
He struck an emotional chord by praising the excellent academic record that Udupi has displayed in the years gone by. Reassuring a growth in job opportunities in coastal Karnataka, if the BJP government comes to power, Modi said that no youngster will have to leave behind their family in search of employment in other cities. Hinting at the growing powers of the sand mafia in the region, Modi criticised the current state government’s inactivity pertaining to the matter.
In light of the approaching Legislative Assembly election in Udupi on May 12, the PM quipped, “Delhi toh humaari hai, ab Karnataka ki baari hai”. While PM Modi advised people to vote for BS Yeddyurappa, the BJP’s Chief Ministerial candidate, there was no sign of Raghupati Bhat, BJP candidate from Udupi or Yeddyurappa himself during the event.
“Some people didn’t seem too happy with the way things were managed. There was no shamiana overhead due to the truck accident which happened in Perdoor. The reception to the rally was fine but it was nothing compared to what is usually expected from a Modi rally. I was especially shocked to hear him address the issues pertaining to the sand mafia,” said Takshak Pai, an attendee at the rally. Although, Noor Jahaan, an elderly woman from Malpe, found the rally to be quite satisfactory. “I think I will definitely give my vote to the BJP this time,” she said.
Apart from Shobha Karandlaje, Senior BJP politician O.P Mathur and BJP Minister from Uttar Pradesh Mahendra Singh were some of the other notable members at the event. Prime Minister Modi was also felicitated with a Yakshagana pagade by the local BJP members.
With inputs from Sumit Singh
Featured Image Courtesy: Aayushmaan Sharma
Edited by: Niharika Nambiar