Home Minister Amit Shah proclaimed that the former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh has been on more foreign visits than Prime Minister Modi, in retaliation to Congress' repeated criticism on the matter. Drawing contrast between the two, Amit Shah in a rally in Maharashtra stated that while PM Modi has made lesser visits, there has been a bigger impact than the former's foreign visits, as per PTI. Asserting PM Modi's popularity, he said that the chant 'Modi, Modi' was an honour for the nation, which has now increased.
"Whichever country of the world Narendra Modi ji goes to, people present at the airports start sloganeering 'Modi-Modi.' This is not just respect for Modi ji or BJP. This is an honour for 125 crore people of the country. The honor of the country has increased in the world due to Modi," Amit Shah.
Referring to the extravagant 'Howdy, Modi!' event in Houston that saw US President Donald Trump alongside, Amit Shah claimed that Prime Minister Modi was the "most popular Prime Minister in the world," commending India's diplomatic presence in the global community.
Congress has often mocked PM Modi over his diplomatic foreign visits, even on World Tourism Day on September 27, the grand old party shared a collage of the Prime Minister waving from outside the Air India plane. On July 28, 2018, the BJP retaliated to the "propaganda" of the Opposition by sharing a graphic comparing the then statistics of PM Modi's visit to that of Dr. Manmohan Singh.
According to combined government data of his first term and the second term, PM Modi has been on 56 foreign visits to date, including multiple visits to some nation.
Amit Shah also claimed that the Central aid to Maharashtra had gone up considerably during the BJP-led regime. "During the Manmohan Singh-led government, the total Central aid for Maharashtra was just Rs 1.15 lakh crore. But this number in the Modi government rose to over Rs 4.30 lakh crore," he said. Amit Shah said the Congress is now leaderless as its prime leader (Rahul Gandhi) visits foreign countries when an election campaign is in full swing. "We are unable to see opposition leaders, except Sharad Pawar, in poll campaign," he added.
Assembly polls in the state of Maharashtra are scheduled on October 21 and the results of the polls will be announced on October 24. While the BJP and the Shiv Sena are contesting the elections together with the former on 150 seats and the latter on 124 seats. The NCP and the Congress are also contesting in an alliance with equal seat-sharing deal between the parties. While the NCP-Congress duo faced massive Lok Sabha poll debacle, internal tussle in the BJP-Sena alliance has been reported. With such a political situation in the state, the upcoming assembly election will be a test for both the alliances.
(With PTI inputs)