Prime minister Narendra Modi said that the opposition alliance of the Congress and the DMK in Tamil Nadu is keen on capturing power in the state “only to fill their pockets”.
Modi, who addressed a public meeting on Thursday (February 25) at the Codissia Trade Fair Complex grounds in Coimbatore as part of an election rally ahead of the assembly polls after inaugurating a slew of state government projects, said: ”Today, the nation is seeing two distinct styles of politics — the Opposition’s mis-governance and corruption, and the NDA’s governance with compassion. They want to capture power to fill their pockets” he said.
“The regime of DMK and the Congress are like corruption hackathons. Their leaders brainstorm on how to loot. Those who give innovative ways to loot are given posts and ministries,” he said. Modi said the Opposition’s way of doing politics is by bullying and harassing. Whenever the DMK comes to power, it promotes the muscle men culture and has anti-social elements in every district to cheat innocent citizens. “In such a culture, women suffer the most,” he said.
“It shows their attitude to women. The entire state knows how the DMK treated ‘Amma’ Jayalalithaa. The leaders who troubled Jayalalithaa have been rewarded by the DMK and Congress. The power cuts during the DMK regime is well-known,” Modi added.
Saying that the DMK has lost the right to call itself a party of all the people in the state, Modi said the last time the DMK got majority on its own in the assembly was 25 years ago.
“Both the Congress and the DMK are suffering from internal contradictions. They continue their family drama. But the NDA family is united. Our aim is the welfare of the state and its people,” he said.
“This year, Tamil Nadu will elect a new government at a critical moment of Indian history. In the last few years, people of India have given a strong message that they want development-oriented governance and that the only politics they will accept is politics of development and good governance. They want to keep anti-developmental elements at a distance,” he said.
An example for federalism
The NDA at the Centre and the Tamil Nadu government work as a classic example of cooperative federalism, he said.
His speech largely focused on MSMEs and farmers. “The conventional view of development ignores small businessmen and small farmers. The NDA-led government has accorded top priority to these two sections,” Modi said.
He applauded the Coimbatore’s MSME units for “adding wealth and value” and said they have greatly contributed to the ‘atmanirbhar Bharat’ campaign of the Centre.
“We took many measures during COVID to help the MSMEs. One example is the emergency credit line guarantee scheme. About Rs 14,000 crore was given out under the scheme benefiting nearly 3.5 lakh MSMEs in the state. In Coimbatore, alone, about 25,000 small industries benefited,” Modi said.
He said the portal ‘Champions’ has been launched to redress the grievances of MSMEs in a faster manner. “Last year, the definition of MSME was changed to be more inclusive and broad-based” he added.
Centre aiding Tamil Nadu’s development: Modi
The Union budget has proposed reducing custom duties for various products, including steel and iron, and setting up seven new textile parks in three years. Tiruppur, near Coimbatore, is a textile hub.
“We have also worked for the development of small farmers. From Kisan credit card to soil health card, from e-nam to effective crop insurance scheme, we want to bring a paradigm shift in the farming sector. We do not want our farmers to suffocate due to middlemen. The PM Kisan scheme completed two years yesterday (Wednesday, February 23). Our government has announced holistic MSP for rice and and MSP for copra has been doubled,” Modi said.
Modi said the development needs of Tamil Nadu have been addressed. About 12 lakh housing units have been sanctioned in the state under the PM Awas Yojana. Many cities of the state have been included under the smart city mission. The state has also joined the Jal Jeevan Mission because of which about 40 lakh rural households have got tap connection, he said.
“We take great pride in the culture of Tamil Nadu. Tamil is the oldest language. We have decided to allow technical and medical education in local languages,” he said.
Devendra Kula Vellalars nomenclature caters to regional aspirations: Modi
In a region where Vellalars or Gounders are dominant, Modi touting the change of nomenclature of seven sub-castes of Pallars to ‘Devendra Kula Vellalars’ as his government’s achievement received lukewarm. Modi, however, claimed the government had decided to change the nomenclature in response to such a demand. “The DMK ruled the state for many years and the Congress ruled the Centre for many years. But they were not bothered about the demand of the DKV community. It was the AIADMK and BJP accepted that demand. The NDA stands for regional aspiration and national progress” Modi said.
The Vellalars have made it known that they are against such a name change. They have been staging protests, although in small numbers, in the various parts of the state seeking the withdrawal of the name change.