‘Congress’s NYAY an admission they did injustice for 60 years’: PM Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday upped the ante against the Congress with stinging remarks on its poll promise of rolling out a minimum income guarantee scheme if voted to power in the Lok Sabha polls.

“They are now saying ‘ab hoga nyay’, now there will be justice…This means that they have admitted that they did injustice for 60 years,” said PM Modi.

PM Modi invoked former Tamil Nadu chief ministers J Jayalalithaa and MG Ramachandran to seek vote for the AIADMK candidate at Theni Lok Sabha seat, where he was addressing an election rally.

“I pay my respects to Jayalalithaa and MG Ramachandran who lived and worked for the poor,” PM Modi said in the Lok Sabha constituency while seeking vote for AIADMK candidate and Tamil Nadu Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam’s son P Ravindranath Kumar.

MGR was a charismatic actor-politician, who began his political journey with the Congress but quit the party to join the DMK, which he left to form his own AIADMK in 1972. In five years’ time, MGR routed DMK in 1977 assembly polls and became the chief minister of Tamil Nadu.

Jayalalithaa was MGR’s protégée and rose to prominence after his death in 1987 while he was still the chief minister of the state. Jayalalithaa, a five-time Tamil Nadu chief minister, died in December 2016 after a prolonged illness.

The BJP is in alliance with the AIADMK in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. The alliance is pitted against the UPA led by the Congress and the DMK in the state. There are 40 Lok Sabha seats in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. Tamil Nadu votes for all 39 Lok Sabha seats in the parliamentary elections and 18 assembly segments in the simultaneous bypolls.

Kumar is up against former Union minister EVKS Elangovan, who has been fielded as UPA candidate from Theni. Both sides have replaced their candidates from Theni Lok Sabha constituency. In 2014, AIADMK’s Parthipan R, the sitting MP had defeated DMK’s Pon Muthuramalignam by over 3 lakh votes.

“Theni is the land of Jayalalithaa and MG Ramachandran. The Congress was not able to find a candidate who belongs to this region…They must have sensed the mood of the people in this region,” said PM Modi taking a dig at EVKS Elangovan, the Congress leader from Erode district of Tamil Nadu.

PM Modi’s election rally at Theni came a day after Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s address in the district. In his election speech, Gandhi spoke about Congress’s NYAY or Nyuntam Aay Yojana, its promise to provide cash support to poorest 5 crore families in the country.

Gandhi promised that if the Congress wins the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the government will determine Rs 12,000 as minimum income for a family and will transfer Rs 6,000 to the bank accounts of beneficiaries identified under the scheme. The BJP has dismissed the proposed scheme of the Congress as poll gimmick.