PM Modi / File Photo (Photo Source - Credits Facebook)
PM Modi / File Photo (Photo Source - Credits Facebook)

Election Tactics: How Did PM Modi Stir Political Debate Using Manmohan Singh's 18-Year-Old Speech?

INC President Kharge said, "In the history of India, no Prime Minister has lowered the dignity of his post as much as Modi ji has."

Banswara- During an election rally in Rajasthan's Banswara, Prime Minister Narendra Modi ignited controversy by invoking a speech made by former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2006. Modi accused Singh's government of advocating the redistribution of Hindu properties to Muslims, a claim echoed in the Congress manifesto. Congress swiftly responded, condemning Modi's remarks as shameful and questioning his mental state.

Congress Party President Mallikarjun Kharge criticized Modi's speech and took to Twitter to express his sentiments. Kharge wrote, "Modi ji's panic-filled speech shows that INDIA is winning in the first phase results. What Modi ji said is not only a hate speech but also a well-thought-out ploy to divert attention. Today, the Prime Minister did what he has learned from the values of the Sangh."

"Lying for power, making baseless references, and making false accusations against opponents are specialties of the RSS and BJP's training. The 140 crore people of the country are no longer going to fall prey to these lies. Our manifesto is for every Indian. It talks about equality for all. It talks about justice for all."

"The Congress Manifesto (Nyaya Patra) is based on the foundation of truth, but it seems that the throne of the dictator in the form of Goebbels is now shaking. In the history of India, no Prime Minister has lowered the dignity of his post as much as Modiji has."

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi joined the fray, asserting that Modi's resort to falsehoods indicated a desperation to divert attention from pressing issues. Gandhi urged voters to focus on employment, family, and future during the upcoming elections, dismissing Modi's tactics as a distraction.

Letter to ECI to take strict action against PM Modi 

The CPI has strongly denounced Modi's actions and urged the Election Commission to take immediate action by banning him. In a Twitter post, CPI stated, "What is the Election Commission doing? Take action against the PM without delay." Additionally, Member Polit Bureau, Subhashini Ali shared the letter submitted to the Election Commission of India, highlighting the latest instance of violation of the Model Code of Conduct by Narendra Modi, the star campaigner of the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP).

The Model Code of Conduct (MCC) explicitly prohibits activities that may exacerbate existing differences or foster mutual hatred between different castes, communities, or religions. It expressly forbids any appeals to caste or communal sentiments for securing votes, and prohibits the use of places of worship for election propaganda. Moreover, Section 123(3) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, condemns appeals by candidates, or anyone with their consent, to vote or refrain from voting based on religion, race, caste, community, or language as corrupt electoral practices. Section 123(3A) further denounces attempts to promote feelings of enmity or hatred among citizens on these grounds during elections. Violators of these provisions risk disqualification from contesting elections for up to six years.

Modi's speech blatantly contravened these codes by not only appealing to communal feelings but also instigating and exacerbating hatred among Hindus against Muslims.

What did Manmohan Singh Say in his 2006 Speech on Resource Allocation?

In his speech at the meeting of the National Development Council on December 9, 2006, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh emphasized the need to allocate resources for the upliftment of marginalized communities, including Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, backward classes, and minorities. Singh underscored the importance of planning development initiatives to empower minorities, particularly Muslim minorities, ensuring their equal participation in the benefits of development.

Singh's proposed program included substantial investments in critical sectors such as agriculture, irrigation, water resources, health, education, rural infrastructure, and general infrastructure needs. He emphasized the necessity of public investment to uplift marginalized communities, including SC/ST, Other Backward Classes, minorities, women, and children. Singh advocated for the formulation of new plans to guarantee that minorities, especially Muslim minorities, receive equitable access to development benefits, asserting their right to share equally in the fruits of progress.

He emphasized that minorities should have a priority claim on resources to address historical inequalities and promote inclusive growth. However, Singh also acknowledged the challenges of balancing these priorities with other national responsibilities, stressing the importance of resource availability in fulfilling the demands of various sectors.

BJP had targeted the UPA government

The BJP targeted the UPA government on this issue, alleging that the part related to "Muslims" was removed and shared separately. During its time in opposition, the BJP criticized the UPA government regarding this matter. As the controversy intensified, the UPA government issued a clarification the following day, with the Prime Minister's Office stating that the statement had been deliberately misinterpreted.

Additionally, the UPA government clarified that the proposed policy would benefit the better-off sections of society, emphasizing the government's responsibility to pay special attention to the welfare of the weaker and marginalized sections.

Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has reiterated on multiple occasions that "India must shine, but it must shine for all." However, a 20-second clip highlighting only the part where Singh mentions the Muslim community is circulating on social media.

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