Modi blasts ‘ur­ban Nax­als’; Rahul flays note ban, GST

Mint ST - - NEWS - Shaswati.d@livemint.com NEW DELHI

Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi tore into Nax­alites at an elec­tion rally in the so-called red cor­ri­dor on Fri­day, a day af­ter they gunned down four civil­ians and a mem­ber of the Cen­tral In­dus­trial Se­cu­rity Force in Dan­te­wada.

At the rally, held in the divi­sional head­quar­ters at Bas­tar three days be­fore it goes to polls in the first phase of assem­bly elec­tions in Ch­hat­tis­garh on 12 No­vem­ber, Modi also claimed that “ur­ban Nax­als” and the Congress were tac­itly sup­port­ing Nax­alites. Modi said “ur­ban Nax­als” were “re­mote con­trol­ling” Nax­alites in Ch­hat­tis­garh—a state with large tribal pop­u­la­tions liv­ing in min­eral-rich and forested re­gions.

“The tribal chil­dren should be study­ing, but in­stead the Nax­als hand them weapons and de­stroy their lives. Ur­ban Nax­als stay in ci­ties and have lux­u­ri­ous lives, their chil­dren are well-ed­u­cated, but they re­mote con­trol the lives of adi­vasi (tribal) chil­dren and de­stroy their lives. The Congress should re­spond why they stand up for the ‘ur­ban Nax­als’. If the gov­ern­ment pros­e­cutes them, the Congress stands up for them and here they de­nounce Nax­al­ism,” Modi said.

“The Nax­als had killed adi­vasi lead­ers who were work­ing for the devel­op­ment of Bas­tar. Even to­day the Congress lead­ers don’t have a re­sponse to that. Do­or­dar­shan jour­nal­ist Achyu­tanand Sahu was work­ing to cap­ture the state’s devel­op­ment on cam­era. But the Nax­als killed him in cold blood,” Modi said, urg­ing the peo­ple to vote on 12 No­vem­ber.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) holds six of the 18 assem­bly con­stituen­cies go­ing to polls in the first phase. The Congress holds the re­main­ing 12. The BJP aims to make in­roads in dis­tricts af­fected by Left Wing Ex­trem­ism (LWE), with Bas­tar’s Sukma, Dan­te­wada, Bi­japur, Kanker, Konda­gaon, Narayan­pur and Ra­j­nandgaon go­ing to polls on Mon­day.

Modi took a dig at the pre­vi­ous United Pro­gres­sive Al­liance (UPA) gov­ern­ments and said that though fi­nances were avail­able to them, the funds were con­trolled by “a se­lect few rich

Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi and Congress chief Rahul Gandhi ad­dress poll ral­lies in Ch­hat­tis­garh on Fri­day.

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