Shrinagar/Pithoragarh: Prime Minister Narendra Modi today launched a frontal attack on the Congress for "insulting" the armed forces by questioning the surgical strikes, "sleeping" over One Rank One Pension or OROP for 40 years and for "indulging" in corruption.
Describing Uttarakhand as a land of the brave soldiers, he attacked Congress for questioning the veracity of the surgical strikes, which, he said, "insulted the armed forces and the valour of those who made supreme sacrifice for the country".
"It is a misfortune of our country that some parties and leaders raise questions about our armed forces and the valour of those who laid down their lives for the country. No one should ever question their bravery," he said.
"The time for those who looted the country for 70 years has come to an end. I promise that those who looted the country will have to pay back now. Neither will I rest nor will I let the looters rest in peace till this task is complete. It is time everyone gives an account now," PM Modi told his last poll rally in Pithoragarh ahead of the February 15 election.
He exhorted the people to vote out the "tainted" Congress government that sullied 'devbhoomi's' or land of the Gods image turning it into a "lootbhoomi" or land of the corrupt and "ruined" the state due to its lack of vision to tap its full potential.
He also hit out at Congress accusing it of opposing Uttarakhand's creation and said it has now aligned with SP the government of which in Uttar Pradesh then committed atrocities on people agitating for the state's formation.
PM Modi asked the people to take a pledge to hand down exemplary punishment in the polls to those who played with their future so that no future government dares to do so.
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Terming the cross-LoC strikes as a "big incident" in military history which various security agencies across the world are studying, he said when Indian soldiers carried out the operation and demolished terrorist camps without losing a single life, the Congress posed several questions including how no one was killed in the attack.
"Does it behove Congress to do this. Is this not an insult to the armed forces? Is this not an insult to the valour of our brave soldiers? You do politics and attack Modi as much as you can, but don't ever raised doubts about our military and the soldiers' bravery," he said.
Attacking Congress for "sleeping over" the one-rank one- pension (OROP) issue for 40 long years, Modi said, "Did they not insult the armed forces by ignoring the soldiers' claims for so long.
"Did they not make fun and insulted the armed forces by earmarking a mere Rs 500 crore in the budget for OROP which would have cost a total of Rs 12,500 crore. Our government has already paid Rs 6,500 crore to the soldiers as OROP benefit," he said.
In a rally earlier, he alleged that Chief Minister Harish Rawat failed to stop exodus from villages in hills due to lack of job opportunities, he asked why should a state that has the potential to attract the whole world in fields of tourism, herbal wealth and unique traditions in yoga should suffer from migration of young people in search of livelihood.