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Modi grazes on ‘Pink Revolution’ grass

Nawada, April 2: Narendra Modi today accused the Centre of promoting a “Pink Revolution” — springing a coinage that evokes a pet theme of the RSS but couching it in the language of development.

“This country wants a Green Revolution,” the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate told a rally in Nawada, about 100km south of Patna, which has a substantial population of Yadavs.

“But those at the Centre want a ‘Pink Revolution’. Do you know what it means? When animals are slaughtered, the colour of their flesh is pink. Animals are being slaughtered and taken out of the country. The government in Delhi is giving subsidies to those who are carrying out this slaughter.”

On the face of it, the BJP’s candidate for Prime Minister may say he was promoting vegetarianism and humane treatment of animals. But prevention of cow slaughter is a pet theme of the Hindutva brand associated with the Sangh parivar.

Since the start of his prime ministerial campaign, Modi has tried to shake off the label of a hardliner.

But today, he said: “There are many big slaughterhouses in the country. The government is not willing to provide subsidy to a person who keeps a cow but if a person wants to set up a slaughterhouse, he gets assistance.”

Modi was in Nawada to campaign for the BJP’s Giriraj Singh, who was animal husbandry minister in the Nitish Kumar government when it approved the setting up of a modern slaughterhouse in 2012. In Bihar, cow slaughter is not banned.

The Gujarat chief minister sought to reach out to the substantial Yadav voters — the key base of Lalu Prasad — in Nawada. “I am the son from Dwarka and have the blessings of Lord Krishna. I have a natural claim over the Yaduvanshis (Yadavs). I will take care of your interests,” he said.

“The Union government doesn’t want any kind of revolution but is only interested in a Pink Revolution. Those backing the UPA government (a reference to Yadav leaders Lalu Prasad and Mulayam Singh) should consider whether they want to back a revolution in which they kill livestock or a government which cares for farmers and cattle grazers.”

Meat exports have increased substantially, by around 52 per cent, since 2010-11. From 7.4 lakh tonnes in 2010-11, the quantity went up to 11.2 lakh tonnes in 2012-13.

Modi has in the past often spoken out against the UPA government for policies that he says lead to the killing of cows.

During the campaign for the Assembly elections last year, Modi had asked the Centre to re-think its policies on meat trade. He has often questioned why duties are applied to cotton exports, for example, but not to meat exports.

But in the campaign for the Lok Sabha election, he had thus far focused on his promise of development and jobs.

Results known

At a rally later in the day at Buxar, Modi said the results of the election were already known. “This is the first election where the results have been declared even before the polls,” he said.