Taking on the UPA government for its failure to check corruption and price rise, the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate, Narendra Modi, said on Sunday that only a person like him with no family bonding could root out problems like corruption.

Addressing a rally in the party’s stronghold of Sujanpur Tihra in the Hamirpur Lok Sabha constituency, he blamed the Congress for all major problems afflicting the country.

“Black money stashed away abroad belongs to the people of India. These people [Congressmen] have looted the poor and stockpiled the money there,” he said. “And if they are not corrupt, what is the problem in getting back the black money? If we need freedom from corruption, we need freedom from the corrupt,” he said, calling for a Congress Mukt Bharat or a Congress-free India.

He promised the salaried class that he would credit a percentage of the black money, to be recovered from abroad, into their bank accounts as a reward for their honesty in paying income tax all these years. Himachal Pradesh has a majority of salaried people with the government as the biggest employer.

Mocking the Congress for mishandling the Telangana issue, he said the party was doing zehar ki kheti [sowing the seeds of poison in Andhra Pradesh by dividing it.]

Reminding the people of the UPA’s promise to check price rise in the first 100 days of its second term, Mr. Modi asked the crowd repeatedly, “Has it come down” only to get “not at all” in euphoric reply. The common man was the last priority for the Congress.

Mr. Modi also raised the issue of remunerative price for apple farmers. They got a good price for their produce only during the Vajpayee regime; but now with unlimited import of apples from abroad, they were not getting even the minimum price.

BJP president Rajnath Singh spoke at the well-attended rally.

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