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Narendra Modi: Fight against corruption to dominate BJP’s political campaign

LiveMint logoLiveMint 25-09-2017 Gyan Varma

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday reiterated his commitment to continue to combat corruption and said that there will be no compromise in intent on this front.

Modi delivered this message to party workers on the final day of the two-day national executive of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Delhi, implicitly signalling that the fight against corruption would remain central to the party’s political messaging.

“My battle against corruption is uncompromised, nobody will be spared. I have no relatives,” the Prime Minister said, finance minister Arun Jaitley reported at a press conference.

Taking a swipe at the opposition, Jaitley said that the Union government was not expecting political support in its fight to contain corruption. “Those who are on the receiving end (because of the steps against corruption) will be uneasy,” Jaitley added.

In the course of his speech at the national executive meeting, Modi said that opposition parties were using harsh words against the government as they did not have any substantive point. “Harsh words of opposition parties cannot be a substitute when there is no charge against the government.”

While talking about the political dominance of BJP in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that BJP has 13 chief ministers, six deputy chief ministers, 60 Union ministers, 233 state ministers, over 1,387 legislative assembly members and 364 members of Parliament (MPs) which reflects the trust reposed in the party by voters.

This is a reflection of the party’s credibility, Jaitley said.

“BJP is the most prominent political party in the country. The Prime Minister said that contesting election is just one of the several responsibilities of a political party and we should use this opportunity to ensure that democracy goes beyond the elections.”

Jaitley further said that Prime Minister asked the party’s leaders to ensure that the political influence of BJP is used as an instrument to generate mass participation of people.

“The Swachata (Clean India) Mission is one such programme where there is mass participation of people. The participation of people in a democracy can help improve lives of the people,” Jaitley added, quoting Modi.

Political analysts say that while the Prime Minister is personally above reproach, even this government has failed to evolve an institutional mechanism to address corruption.

“I have no doubt that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is not corrupt but the government has done little for Lokpal (the anti-corruption ombudsman) or build institutional mechanism to fight against corruption and black money. Modi is taking a populist stand which has helped the National Democratic Alliance against the Congress and other opposition parties,” said Abhay Kumar Dubey, a New Delhi based political analyst.

Dubey further said, “No matter how populist stand is taken by the Prime Minister, the Union government cannot escape (criticism for) the severe economic crisis in the country and price rise. The economic crisis in the country is too severe to be brushed under the carpet.”

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