Prime Minister Narendra Modi (File image: Twitter/@BJP4India)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, while addressing a public rally in Hooghly, West Bengal, affirmed that the state was ready for a change or "poriborton".
Ahead of the state assembly elections, the Prime Minister on February 22 dedicated to the nation doubling of Azimganj to Khargraghat Road section, which is a part of Howrah-Bandel-Azimganj section of Eastern Railway, and inaugurated several railway projects in the state.
“This enthusiasm and energy by all of you is sending a message from Kolkata to Delhi. Now West Bengal has made up its mind for poriborton," Modi said.
He started his speech with a tribute in Bangla to Baba Tarak Nath of the famous Tarakeshwar shrine. Modi said that West Bengal had been neglected when it came to investment in railway infrastructure, and keeping that in mind, the Centre has prioritised the same.
“Last time, I came here to dedicate gas connection. Today, I am here to offer several railway projects to Bengal. This year 'rail & metro' connectivity is the Centre's priority. Such work should have been done decades ago and now, we should not delay - from broadening of rail lines to electrification work, money is being invested in infrastructure projects,” Modi said.
In his speech, the Prime Minister also accused the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress government of not transferring funds of central schemes to people in the state. From here on, he asserted, he would make Bengal "Tollamukt aur Rojgaar Yukt" (corruption-free and rich in employment opportunities).
He further added that politics in the state was of appeasement and not patriotism. Pointing out the poor condition of Vande Mataram Bhawan, he said this was the same place where Bankim Chandra brainstormed and wrote Vande Mataram.
“Failure to keep the place of the creator of such 'amar gaan' in a good state is an injustice to West Bengal's pride and there is huge politics involved in this - the politics which focuses on vote bank, not patriotism; appeasement, not Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas,” he said.
The Prime Minister also brought to attention the lack of portable drinking water in the majority of households in the state. He claimed that while the Centre had provided such connections to over 3.6 crore households since the launch of the scheme, the number in Bengal had only gone up from 2 lakh to 9 lakh.
Modi said the politics of appeasement would not be forgiven by the people of West Bengal. "People of Bengal will never forgive those who insult their culture for vote bank politics," he said.