Shah attacks Cong, Ajmal at Sankardeva’s birthplace  

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Assam will be flood free state in next five years: Union Home Minister

HT Correspondent

NAGAON, Feb 25: Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Thursday attacked the Congress for joining forces with Badruddin Ajmal’s AIUDF in Assam because of its “lust for power”, and alleged that successive governments of the party did nothing to rid the state of violence and infiltration.

The Congress’ “greed” to capture power in the state will remain unfulfilled and the BJP along with its ally Asom Gana Parishad (AGP), which symbolises Assamese identity, will win the assembly polls with a two-thirds majority, Shah told a public rally at Borduwa, the birthplace of Srimanta Sankardeva, the 15-16th century saint, scholar and religious reformer.

“The Congress talks about providing security when it is joining hands with Ajmal. It’s only because of its lust for power that it has joined hands with Ajmal.

“The party did nothing to free Assam from violence and infiltration despite having a Prime Minister who was elected from the state,” he said, referring to Manmohan Singh who is a Rajya Sabha member from Assam.

Shah also accused the parties that were formed in the aftermath of the anti-CAA protests of “helping the Congress which used bullets to suppress the Assam agitation against foreigners”.

He said these parties were formed so they could chip away at BJP’s votes and help the Congress but they will not succeed.

Prime Minister Modi will never turn his back on Assam and the North East, and will go to any extent to make the region a growth engine of the country, he said.

The Congress, which is now talking about restoring Assamese pride, did nothing to protect the one-horned rhinoceros that is linked to Assamese identity, Shah said.

He said Modi wanted to rid the state of recurrent floods that cause large-scale disruption and displacement every year.

“With the help of satellite imagery, places will be identified to divert water to create ponds. I appeal to the people of Assam to once again install a BJP government and I assure that in the next five years we will free the state from the annual floods,” he said.

It is with this intention that Modi visited different states of the North East at least 35 times during the last five years, Shah said.

“The Prime Minister wants to take the region forward on the path of progress and make it free from corruption, violence and infiltration,” he asserted.

Recalling the contributions of eminent personalities of Nagaon, Shah said, it was the land of Assam’s first chief minister Gopinath Bordoloi who played a crucial role in ensuring the state remained a part of the country, of international athlete Hima Das and popular singer Papon, besides a host of freedom fighters.

Shah reminded the people that it was the BJP government which conferred Bharat Ratna on Assam’s iconic singer-poet Bhupen Hazarika and Padma Bhushan on Congress chief minister the late Tarun Gogoi for their valuable contributions to the state.

The home minister extolled Srimanta Sankardeva for his role in unifying Assam with the rest of the country more than 500 years ago which prompted Mahatma Gandhi to remark that it was he who initiated ‘Ram Rajya’ in the state. “The spirit will be rekindled,” he said.

He said the previous Congress governments did nothing to spread the message of the saint to the rest of the country and the world.

The home minister visited Batadrava Than, the vaishnavite monastery associated with Sankardeva where he formally launched the government’s beautification initiative.

Praising chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal and finance minister Himanta Biswa Sarma for providing an aid of Rs 2.5 lakh each to 8,000 ‘namghars’ (Vaishnavite prayer halls), Shah suggested that they should extend the benefit to 17,000 more such facilities during the remaining days of their current term in office.

Shah had, during an earlier visit to Guwahati on December 26 last year, remotely laid the foundation stone for the development and beautification of Batadrava Than at Borduwa, the birth place Sankardeva, at an estimated cost of Rs 188 crore.

Chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal; finance, health and education minister Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma also spoke on the occasion and in their respective speeches, they elaborated slew of various developmental schemes and other projects being initiated as well as implemented by the state alliance government during its first five years long tenure.

State water resource minister Keshab Mahanta, agriculture minister Atul Bora, minister Pijush Hazarika, MP Kamakhya Prasad Tasa, former Union railway minister for state Rajen Gohain, MLAs Angoorlata Deka, Rupak Sarma, Dimbeswar Das, Ramakanta Deori, other dozen of state BJP leaders were present in the rally.

Earlier, Shah went to Maha Mrityunjay Mandir, the largest Shiva temple in the entire Asia, newly constructed in a large shape of ‘Shiva Linga’ at Nagaon Barhampur Bherbheri area where he offered prayers to the Lord Shiva.

It is pertinent to mention that the height of the temple is around 126 feet and it was first founded by Baba Bhrigu Giri Maharaj in 2003 after a long exploring in the entire region.

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