Mumbai, October 12: Addressing five rallies in the State on Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi raised the pitch on the penultimate day of campaigning for Maharashtra Assembly polls as he predicted that the Congress and the NCP would be restricted to 10 seats each in the 288 member Assembly.
Alluding to the NCP’s symbol, the clock, Mr. Modi said the ‘10 past 10 time’ on it was symbolic of the seats the former allies would win in the elections. “They will not be able to win more than 10 seats each,” Mr. Modi said at a rally in Tuljapur in Osmanabad district.
Mocking the NCP further, at a rally in Pandharpur in Solapur district, the PM rephrased its initials to “Naturally Corrupt Party.” If voted to power, Mr. Modi said, there would be a surge in the NCP’s corruption. “Since the time the NCP was born nothing has changed, its leaders have remained the same, its slogans and goals too. Even their symbol. Do you know what the clock means? It represents that in last 10 years the party has increased its corrupt practices by 10 times.” If voted to power, the NCP’s corrupt activities would increase “15 fold,” Mr. Modi told the crowd.
Though Mr. Modi also criticized the Congress, his scorns were mostly reserved for the NCP and its senior leadership. He condemned the party for the comments made its leaders, indirectly referring to the controversial statements made by former home minister R.R. Patil and former deputy CM Ajit Pawar.
“My head hangs with shame listening to the kind of statements the NCP leaders make. We have to remove this ‘kalank’ (blot) from the State,” Mr. Modi said.
While Mr. Patil had on Friday trivialized a rape incident where he said that the MNS candidate booked for it could have waited for the elections to get over before committing the crime, Mr. Pawar had last year faced widespread condemnation for his “urine” remark.
With just one day left for campaigning, Maharashtra is destined to witness a five-way battle after the two major alliances split recently. This year would mark the end of the Congress and its allies, Mr. Modi predicted. The BJP hopes to come to power on its own.