PM lambasts NDA for using vile language

9:50 AM, Thursday, March 7th, 2013

Manmohan  Singh New Delhi : An unusually combative Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday launched a sharp attack on the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and exuded confidence that the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) would return to power based on his government’s performance in the last 10 years.

Singh used economics to demonstrate superior performance of his government. “Our work and performance are the best judges,” he said responding to a debate in the Lok Sabha.

“In 2009, the BJP fielded an iron man L K Advani against the lamb that Manmohan Singh is. We all know what was the result. People will repeat the same verdict,” he said, referring to the BJP’s campaign under the leadership of L K Advani in the 2009 general election. The BJP-led NDA’s strategy was a relentless attack on Singh, which did not work.

Taking strong objection to the Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s description of the Congress as “termites” and Singh as a “nightwatchman” whose job is to keep the prime minister’s chair warm for Congress scion Rahul Gandhi, he said the BJP used “choicest abuses” against the Congress at their national council meeting, but he did not intend to reply in that manner.

Using economics to justify why the UPA was better than the NDA, he said: “If you look at nine years of the UPA regime, including the current economic slowdown, the average growth will be 7.9 per cent of GDP. It was more than the 6 per cent during six years of NDA regime.

“The average growth in agriculture and allied sectors stood at 3.7 per cent in the UPA regime while it was no more than 2.9 per cent in the NDA regime. Per capita rural consumption, too, improved to 3.4 per cent in the UPA rule compared to 0.8 per cent in the NDA period.” The average rate of decline in poverty in the country is now 2 per cent per year but it stood at just 0.8 per cent when the NDA was in power, he said.

“It is correct to say that growth rate of the country came down in 2012 due to slowdown but nowhere else it was in upward direction. Our growth rate looks improved even though we are not satisfied with this. Our achievements can’t be belittled,” he said.

Countering the BJP criticism of UPA government’s economic policies, Singh said: “Jo Garajte Hain Woh Baraste Nahin (thundering clouds do not rain). We have seen this arrogance not for the first time. The shinning India campaign in 2004 led to disastrous results for the BJP.”

He also highlighted the achievements made by the UPA government in education, health, skill development and industry emphasising his government was concerned over farmer’s plight, water security, violence against women, transparency in governance and the welfare of the minorities and was taking steps to address these issues.

Leader of the opposition in Rajya Sabha Aun Jaitley, however, charged the UPA government with a series of corruption cases and policy paralysis. Jaitley said there were “dual power centres” in the UPA government and asked the prime minister to “assert” himself more for running the government.

“When the UPA came to power nine years ago, there was a buzz of excitement about India. The NDA had left power with 8 per cent growth rate and now, we may have a less than 5 per cent growth rate. The atmosphere has changed from that of enthusiasm to sense of cynicism about India,” Jaitley said.


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