General election 2019 | BJP has 'copy-pasted' its 2014 document, says Congress

Here are the day's election-related developments at a glance.

April 08, 2019 09:10 am | Updated 10:11 pm IST

BJP president Amit Shah (right), Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh (left) holding copies of the party’s manifesto.

BJP president Amit Shah (right), Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh (left) holding copies of the party’s manifesto.

New Delhi

BJP has 'copy-pasted' its 2014 document: Congress

The Congress criticised the BJP's manifesto, saying the ruling party has “simply copy-pasted” its 2014 poll document and changed all previous deadlines.

Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel said the BJP should have come out with a ‘maafinama’ (letter of apology) instead of a manifesto.

In a series of tweets, he said the difference between the BJP’s manifesto and that of the Congress could be seen from the cover page itself.

“For its 2019 manifesto, BJP has simply copy pasted its 2014 manifesto & changed all previous deadlines from 2019 to 2022,2032,2047,2097. Luckily they didn’t shift any deadlines to the next century,” he wrote on the microblogging site.

Mr. Patel also hit out at BJP leaders for not taking any questions after releasing the manifesto and compared that with Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s interaction with journalists after releasing the poll document.

West Bengal

We will throw the 'dacoit and liar' chowkidar out of power and politics: Mamata

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday sharpened her attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi by calling him a “dacoit and liar chowkidar ” who looted public money during demonetisation.

Ms. Banerjee mocked Mr. Modi for making films, television serial in his name.“Mr. Modi thinks he is a bigger public figure than Mahatma Gandhi and B.R. Ambekdar,” she said.

Hitting out at the Prime Minister for his comment at a public meet at Coochbehar district on Sunday that she and the TMC were suffering from a fear psychosis of him, she warned him “not to dare to threaten her” as it will be his “biggest mistake”.

“In the name of demonetisation he has looted public money and now ahead of elections, he is acting the chowkidar . This chowkidar is a lootera and jhoota [watchman is dacoit and liar]. He is using public money in elections. After looting the country, he is promising ₹1,000, ₹2,000 for farmers. He should be ashamed. I have never seen such a liar Prime Minister in my life,” she said.

“Out of his five years tenure, he has been touring the globe for four-and-a-half years. What was he doing when the farmers were committing suicide across the country? What was he doing when people died due to demonetisation and crores of people lost their jobs?” she asked.

Criticising the BJP manifesto, which was released during the day, which promises bringing in Citizenship (Ammendment) Bill and driving out infiltrators, she alleged that if Mr. Modi is re-elected, he would turn legal citizens into refugees. “If you vote for them [BJP], they will turn you all into refugees in your own country. We will never allow NRC and the Citizenship Bill in our State,” she said.

“Now when elections are knocking at the door, he [Mr. Modi] is threatening everybody and is telling lies all day. He will get the first prize if there is a competition for lying. In this election, people will put Leukoplast on his mouth so that he can’t utter more lies. For the sake of the country he should not only be ousted from his chair but also ousted from politics,” she said.

During 2014 Mr. Modi promised to reopen closed tea gardens. “Did they keep their promise? No. Instead, we [TMC government] have opened the tea gardens,” she claimed. — PTI

Jammu and Kashmir

Take notice of ‘seditious’ campaign by NC, PDP, Panun Kashmir tells ECI

Panun Kashmir, an organisation representing Kashmiri Pandit migrants, appealed to the Election Commission of India (ECI) to ban candidates of the National Conference (NC) and the People's Democratic Party (PDP), from contesting the general election as they were running a “seditious and secessionist” campaign in the Valley.

The campaign launched by the NC and the PDP that accession of Jammu and Kashmir with India was conditional and abrogation of Article 370 would lead to separation of the State from India was preposterous and had seditious connotation, the organisation said.

“The NC and the PDP have embarked upon a brazenly seditious and secessionist campaign. They are virtually acting as overground flanks of Pakistan and the separatist establishment in Jammu and Kashmir,” convenor of Panun Kashmir Agnishakher said.

“We appeal to the ECI to take notice of the seditious nature of the election campaign launched by the NC and the PDP and ban their candidates from contesting the parliamentary election,” he said.

NC vice-president Omar Abdullah last week said his party would not allow any attacks on Jammu and Kashmir’s special status and would seek restoration of terms of accession of the State, including the provision for ‘Sadr-e-Riyasat’ (president) and prime minister posts.

PDP president Mehbooba Mufti too said the relation of Jammu and Kashmir with India would end if the terms and conditions of the State’s accession to the Union were changed. “2020 will also be a deadline from Jammu and Kashmir to the nation. If you remove those terms and conditions on which Jammu and Kashmir acceded to India, our relation with the country will also end,” Ms. Mehbooba told reporters after filing her nomination papers for the Anantnag Lok Sabha constituency.

Panun Kashmir said the two regional parties have rejected every view and policy of the Government of India pertaining to foreign affairs, defence and internal security.

“The Election Commission of India cannot close its eyes to the seditious election campaign launched by both these parties,” Panun Kashmir chairman Ajay Chrungoo said. — PTI

West Bengal

TMC, BJP fight it out on social media

In a bid to reach out to voters, especially the young one, the Trinamool Congress and the BJP in West Bengal have extended their fight to the social media with innovative ideas and catchy jingles.

From coming out with web series to catchy online songs to campaigns, both the parties are looking at making optimal use of social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram, besides traditional emails and SMS.

Attacking the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the TMC has launched a web series “Pradhan Mantri Hisab Do” (Prime Minister, answer this). There is also a “Jumla meter” on Trinamool Congress' website showing whether or not claims made by the BJP especially on governance issues in West Bengal, are true.

The BJP, on the other hand, has made the music video of “Main Bhi Chowkidar” campaign viral on social media.

The Facebook page of the party’s West Bengal unit livestreams all the public meetings of Mr. Modi and party president Amit Shah.

Uttar Pradesh

A rally in Saharanpur, scheduled to be addressed by Congress president Rahul Gandhi and party's general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, has been cancelled.

They haven't been able to take off due to bad weather.

Ms. Vadra will come to Saharanpur at 10 am tomorrow, says a local leader.



Manifesto is a reflection of people’s aspiration, says Modi

The BJP's poll manifesto is a reflection of people’s aspiration, ''jan ke mann ki baat'', according to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

After launching the BJP's manifesto , he said: 

“An unprecedented scale of dialogue took place before the manifesto was finalised and it is the true spirit of democracy.

“Three main themes emerge from the manifesto — Nationalism [our inspiration], Antyodaya [our philosophy] and Sushaasan or good governance [our mantra].

“While most governments are judged and set goals for five years we have set a mid term goal of 75 promises to complete before 2022, the 75th anniversary of our independence. The biggest assessment of a government is not just what you did but whether you ensured last mile delivery.

“We will create a new Jal Shakti ministry as well as one for fishermen as well. We want to work on how to reach tap water to all and create a special task force for it. I met many people of Tamil Nadu and we got the idea through crowd sourcing.

“I have to work in five years to make up for all that should have been done in the last 60 years. We have kept the common man at the centre of our manifesto and our promises.

“Only the poor can defeat poverty. Thus empowerment of poor is important, to start with small things to kindle aspirations. We want to trust the citizens of the country and therefore kept their strength at the centre of our programmes.”

Uttar Pradesh



BJP releases manifesto

Prime Minister Narendra Modi released the BJP's manifesto at the party's headquarters in New Delhi in the presence of senior leaders Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh, Arun Jaitley, and Sushma Swaraj among others.

Termed 'Sankalp Patra,' the manifesto promises uniform civil code, the passage of the Citizenship Amendment Bill and reiterates the BJP's commitment to build a Ram temple in Ayodhya.


“If even part of the promises made by politicians in the past had been fulfilled, India would have been in a different standing. Prime Minister Modi has always said that this crisis of credibility should be addressed which we have tried to do in this document,” said Home Minister Rajnath Singh, who is the chairperson of the party's manifesto committee.

“We are committed to nationalism and we have a zero tolerance policy towards terror. We are committed to uniform civil code in the country. We will bring back the Citizenship Amendment Bill but we will also protect the cultural and ethnic identity of every State. We are committed to the construction of a Ram Temple in Ayodhya in an atmosphere of harmony,” he said.

In the manifesto, the party promised zero per cent rate of interest for up to 5 years on credit of upto ₹1 lakh on Kisan Credit Card. “All farmers to be given income support of ₹6000 p.a. No ceiling of 2 hectares ownership,” said Mr. Singh.

“We will bring in a national commission for trade. We will also give small shopkeepers a pension scheme after 60 years of age. We have determined 75 steps that we will take to build a New India till 2022 [75th anniversary of independence]. We will increase seats in excellent engineering colleges and management institutes as well as in law colleges,” he said.

The party promises to provide power for every village and double the number of national highways.

Mr. Singh said the party would ensure the passage of the Triple Talaq Bill.


Amit Shah cancelled Maharashtra rallies as people didn’t turn up: NCP

The NCP claimed that BJP chief Amit Shah cancelled his rallies in Gadchiroli and Chandrapur districts of Maharashtra on Sunday as people did not turn up for the public meetings.

The BJP dismissed the claim, saying Mr. Shah’s rallies were cancelled due to “technical reasons." Union Minister Hansraj Ahir and BJP MP Ashok Nete are seeking re-election as BJP nominees from Chandrapur and Gadchiroli-Chimur Lok Sabha seats respectively, which will go to the polls on April 11.

“Amit Shah’s two public meetings in Gadchiroli and Chandrapur were cancelled. The airplane is an excuse, the real reason is people had not turned up,” NCP national spokesperson Nawab Malik tweeted with the hashtag “23 May, BJP gone“.

Maharashtra BJP spokesperson Keshav Upadhye said, “Unlike the NCP’s public meetings, BJP’s rallies always receive a big response,” he said. -PTI


In manifesto, RJD promises implementation of Mandal Commission suggestions

The Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) released its manifesto titled “Pratibadhata Patra (commitment document)” while, promising to implement all the suggestions of the Mandal commission if voted to power.

Party leader Tejashwi Yadav, along with party Rajya Sabha member Manoj Jha and State RJD chief Ram Chandra Purvey, released the manifesto at the party headquarters in Patna.

“The RJD also agrees with the manifesto released by the Congress”, said Mr.Tejashwi. The manifesto said that it “favours reservation for weaker section of the upper caste”.



Audio clip of Congress leader 'seeking money' leaked

G. Made Gowda

G. Made Gowda


Amid the political heat in Mandya, Karnataka, thanks to a high-profile poll battle between Independent candidate Sumalatha and coalition nominee Nikhil K., an audio clip, allegedly of a phone conversation between veteran Congress leader and Gandhian G. Made Gowda and JD(S) Minister C.S. Puttaraju in which the former is ''seeking money'' from the latter for election expenses, was leaked on Sunday.

In the one-minute-55-second clip, a voice that is purportedly of Mr. Gowda asks the Minister to arrange money for party workers. It also says former MLC Madhu G. Made Gowda (son of Mr. Made Gowda) would collect the money. The voice, allegedly of Mr. Puttaraju replies that he would arrange for the money.

Hours after the audio clip was leaked, Mr. Gowda admitted that he had asked for money. But he clarified that it was not for bribing voters, but for electioneering expenses.



Assam Chief Electoral Officer bans all political advertisements on polling day

The Chief Electoral Officer of  Assam  has banned all political advertisements in newspapers on election day and the preceding day of polling in the State unless these have been pre-certified by the Media Certification and Monitoring Committee at the State or district level.

“In the context of Assam, the restricted days of advertisement are 10th and 11th April for Phase-I, 17th and 18th April for Phase-II, 22nd and 23rd April for Phase-III,” a press release said.

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