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PM Modi launches Purvanchal expressway in eastern UP, attacks past governments

By Saima Siddiqui 
Updated Date

New Delhi: Lauding Yogi Adityanath government ahead of the upcoming Uttar Pradesh elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Tuesday launched scathing attack on opposition parties stating that those who were unable to provide even basic facilities to the people during their time in power are now unable to digest the performance of the current BJP government in the state.

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Inaugurating the 340-kilometer Purvanchal Expressway in eastern Uttar Pradesh, PM Modi targeted rival Samajwadi Party and the Congress, alleging that for a long time dynasts were in power in both Lucknow and New Delhi. Modi called the expressway a reflection of modern amenities in Uttar Pradesh.

“Under these parties development was limited to areas where the ruling families resided,” the Prime Minister claimed.

Modi said that under the double-engine regime, with his government at the Centre and Adityanath government in the state, focus was on all-round development of Uttar Pradesh.

In an apparent attack on the Samajwadi Party, PM Modi said its leaders were scared even to be seen standing with him out of the fear of losing votes.

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Linking the new expressway to Uttar Pradesh’s pride and aspirations, PM Modi tried to explain at length how its construction would benefit the common people, especially those from the weaker sections.

“If anybody has any doubts about Uttar Pradesh’s capability, they can come and witness it here in Sultanpur. Where there was land only three years ago, a modern expressway now passes through that area. When I had inaugurated this project, I did not know I would land here in a plane. This expressway is the expressway of Uttar Pradesh’s development. It is the expressway of the creation of a new Uttar Pradesh,” he said.

Criticising previous governments, PM Modi said in India, some areas developed rapidly while others lagged, which is not good for any country. The eastern area as well as north-eastern states have not been fair beneficiaries of development, he claimed.

“In Uttar Pradesh also, the kind of politics played out here, the way governments functioned here, they did not focus on all-round development of the state,” he claimed, adding there was a time when mafia ruled the roost.

Under Adityanath, he added, all parts of the state – whether the west or the east – were getting their due focus in being developed.

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PM Modi, who had landed on the expressway in IAF’s C-130J Hercules aircraft, also underlined how the new highway was important from the country’s security perspective.

“The country’s security is as important as the country’s prosperity. We will see soon, how Purvanchal Expressway will become a source of strength for our air force,” Modi said.

He was referring to the fact that fighter planes like Rafale and Sukhoi can land on the road. He later witnessed a mega IAF air show in which fighter planes landed on the expressway.

In his speech, PM Modi also delved at length about the poor state of affairs in the state under the previous governments.

“The situation here around seven-eight years ago would make me wonder what some people were punishing UP for,” he said.

PM Modi pointed out that he was a member of parliament from UP and said he focussed on the state’s development after taking charge. There are now areas which have pucca houses for the poor, toilets in all houses so women do not have to go to defecate in the open, electricity for all.

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“So much work was needed to be done, But I am pained, the previous government did not support me,” he said, attacking the Akhilesh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party.

“Even to be seen standing by my side also made them feel jittery about votes,” Modi said adding that the previous leadership would vanish soon after receiving him at the airport.

Modi further claimed that the previous regime did not have much to account for as far as work was concerned. “Those governments did not work for the state but only their own families. The people will show that such people will be removed from power.

“Who can forget how many powercuts there were in UP? What was the situation of law and order? What was the status of medical facilities. There was not travel but loot on highways. Now those looters are in jails. In the last four years, whether in the east or west, thousands of villages have been connected to roads in Uttar Pradesh,” he said.

PM Modi also highlighted how BJP government’s focus on infrastructure development has benefitted the common man.

“New medical colleges are coming up in UP. Only a few weeks ago, I inaugurated the international airport in Kushinagar. And now, I have the fortune of inaugurating this highway. The expressway will benefit the poor, the middle class, farmers and also the traders. The Dalits, backward sections, middle-class, all will benefit from this expressway,” he said.

“Lack of connectivity made things difficult for people here. The importance 340-km long Purvanchal Expressway is not just that it will connect some districts with Lucknow. It will connect all those towns with Lucknow which have an aspiration to develop, he said. Wherever a good road reaches, there development catches pace and more jobs are created,” he said.

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PM Modi said that the expressway was built at a cost of around Rs 22,000 but will help bring industry worth lakhs of crores and create jobs for the youth. He named several other highways being built, linking different towns of Uttar Pradesh.

“This kind of work is happening in UP for the first time since independence,” he said.

For the industrial development of Uttar Pradesh, there is no nepotism or regionalism, PM Modi said.

Dig at political dynasties

“For a long time, we have been witnessing governments in UP which made big statements on developing industry without thinking about connectivity. As a result, many factors had to be shut down. The partnership of ‘parivarwadis’ (dynasts) crushed the aspirations of the people of Uttar Pradesh,” PM Modi said.

Hitting out at the opposition, PM Modi said the work being done by the Adityanath government was making many people “nervous”.

“Those who were unsuccessful in their time are unable to see the success of Yogi Adityanath. If they cannot even see his success, how can they digest it,” the Prime Minister said.

PM Modi also praised the UP government for its work in vaccinating people.

He thanked the people of the state for not believing in any misinformation on Indian-made vaccines. “I am sure the people of UP will keep defeating such forces”, he said.

Earlier, in a bid to connect with the people, Modi spoke in the local dialect and said it was the people from the Purvanchal region who had taught the British a lesson they never could forger in the first war of independence in 1857.

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