Shimla: Denouncing Gujarat chief minister Narender Modi as a ‘national embarrassment’ union minister Anand Sharma hit out at the BJP prime ministerial aspirant saying that his ambition would remain a dream, something that he will never be fortunate of and something that the country would not have to suffer the misfortune of.
Talking to media persons here, Sharma said delivering a parallel speech on Independence Day (15th August) at Lalan College at a time when the Prime Minister addresses the nation from the ramparts of the Red Fort at Delhi and now by addressing a rally from a replica set of the Red Fort at Ambikanagar in Chhattisgarh just showed the level and dignity of the individual, something that the congress party could not ever stoop to.
The Prime Minister addressing the nation from the Red Fort is not about an individual but about an institution, something that the nation achieved after centuries of struggle for freedom, he said.
The minister said that the Gujarat model of development was only about ‘boastful claims’ propagated the Modi propaganda machine for the facts were otherwise.
It has been falsely claimed that vibrant Gujarat investment bonanza campaigns have attracted over a lakh crore of foreign investment into the state, said Sharma, but the fact was that in the last 10 years the country has only got $ 298 billion of foreign direct investment (FDI)
The largest amount of this investment $ 67 billion has been made in Maharastra followed by Delhi National Capital Region at $ 36 billion. Gujarat has only got $ 8.532 billion, which are Reserve Bank of India figures and not that of Congress party, the minister claimed. And $ 8.532 billion does not add up anywhere near to a one lakh crore rupees, he added.
Pointing out the social indices of the Gujarat model of development, he said that 44 children per thousand, one of the highest in the country, were malnourished in the state, the state records 27 per thousand as school dropouts and access to drinking water in much of rural Gujarat was one of the lowest in the county.
About the states economy he said that after West Bengal, Gujarat with a debt of 1.92 lakh crore was the second most indebted state in the country.
One BJP projecting Modi as it PM candidate, Sharma said that the opposition had never accepted its two consecutive defeats in parliamentary elections. “Good luck to BJP for Modi has only dragged the political discourse to a new low in the country,” he said.
Sharma ruled out mid-term elections saying the party had a mandate for a five year term, something that the party would complete. “It was only speculation being fueled by an impatient BJP,” he said.
On Rahaul Gandhi being declared the prime ministerial candidate of Congress, the minister responded that he represented the hopes and aspirations of the youth.
He was unanimously elected vice-president of the party and all have reposed hopes and aspirations in his leadership, said Sharma