Amid Opposition’s allegation of shielding billionaire businessman Gautam Adani, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said constructive ‘criticism’ is vital for a strong democracy but in the last nine years of his tenure, only accusations and abuses have been hurled on the ruling dispensation.
Concluding the debate on the ‘Motion of Thanks’ to the President’s address to Parliament, the PM in Lok Sabha said, “I always welcome criticism of democracy since India is the mother of democracy. Constructive criticism is vital for a strong democracy and criticism is like a ‘shuddhi yagya’ (purification yagya). However, during the last nine years (since BJP rode to power), instead of criticism only accusations and abuses have been hurled.”
He added, “In the last 9 years, we have had compulsive critics who indulge in ‘unsubstantiated’ allegations instead of constructive criticism. Such criticism will not pass muster with the people who are experiencing the basic facilities for the first time now.”
“Since 2014, Opposition parties have been accusing India has become weaker. Now they say that India has become strong enough to influence other countries in taking decisions. I would like them to come out of this confused state and decide finally whether India has gone stronger or weaker,” the PM said.
In an apparent attack on the Gandhi family, the PM said, “Instead of a dynasty, he is a member of the family of 140 crore Indians. The blessings of 140 crore Indians is my ‘Suraksha Kavach’ (safety armor) .”
Taking a swipe at the previous Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government’s 10 years tenure at the Centre, Modi called the tenure ‘The Lost Decade’.
“The years between 2004 to 2014 (Congress regime) were burdened with ‘scams’ and at the same time, there were terror attacks happening in every corner of the country. This decade saw the decline of the Indian economy and the Indian voice grew very feeble on global fora,” the PM said.
He added, “India under UPA was called ‘The Lost Decade’ while today people are calling the present decade of 2030 ‘India’s Decade’.”
The PM also reiterated the commitment towards those who are deprived and neglected and asserted that the biggest benefit of the government’s scheme has gone to Dalits, tribals, women and vulnerable sections.
Throwing light on the Nari Shakti (women’s power), the PM informed that no efforts have been spared to strengthen the country’s women.
He remarked that when the mothers of India are strengthened, then the people are strengthened, and when the people are strengthened it strengthens the society which leads to a strengthening of the nation.
The PM also underlined that the government has addressed the aspirations of the middle class and honoured them for their honesty.