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Ahead of LS polls, Modi's southern push sees big ticket projects, blistering attacks on Opposition

In back-to-back events in the two southern states that have always cold-shouldered the BJP and have 59 Lok Sabha seats on offer, Modi asserted his party came second to none when delivering to the people of the southern states

PTI Thoothukudi (TN) Published 28.02.24, 10:12 PM
Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi. File picture.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced development projects worth over Rs 17,000 crore for different sectors here on Wednesday, as he wrapped up his two-day visit to the key southern states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu during which he also made a strong pitch for the BJP ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.

Tamil Nadu is writing a 'new chapter of progress,' and due to the Centre’s efforts, modern connectivity in the state is 'on a new high', Modi said after inaugurating the projects.

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Apart from giving a strong infra push, Modi also launched political attack against the opposition parties, and asserted that the earlier UPA regime was not 'bothered’ about Tamil Nadu's progress.

In back-to-back events in the two southern states that have always cold-shouldered the BJP and have 59 Lok Sabha seats on offer, Modi asserted his party came second to none when delivering to the people of the southern states.

Modi's visit, just few months before the Lok Sabha polls, comes amidst efforts by the BJP to make inroads in the south where the saffron party's presence, barring Karnataka, has been negligible.

The Prime Minister has made multiple visits to these states in the past few months, combining official work with temple visits and roadshows.

On Wednesday, the PM laid the foundation stone of multiple development projects, including a new launch complex of ISRO. The facility at Kulasekarapattinam near here, is worth about Rs 986 crore and the facility is set to accommodate 24 launches per year.

He also laid the foundation stone for the outer harbour container terminal for VO Chidambaranar Port and flagged off India's first indigenous green hydrogen waterway vessel. He launched projects in the rail sector as well.

Further, he launched blistering attacks on the Congress and DMK, particularly training his guns against the latter which is ruling Tamil Nadu. Modi charged the two with creating divisions in the society and coming up with 'innovative ideas' for this purpose.

Criticising the DMK for staging a walk out in the Parliament during a recent discussion on the Ayodhya Shri Ram temple, he alleged the DMK has again proved its hate for people's faith.

"Tamil Nadu's connect with Shri Ram is well-known. Before the January 22 consecration of the Ram temple in Ayodhya, I visited different temples, including in Dhanushkodi (in TN). The entire country was happy that the temple was coming up after so many years. A related matter came up in the Parliament but the DMK MPs ran away," Modi said at a rally in neighbouring Tirunelveli.

He also criticised the DMK for being 'oblivious' to the nation's achievements in space sector, after a newspaper advertisement by a state minister belonging to the party over a spaceport kicked up a row over what the BJP claimed had a 'Chinese flag'.

BJP's accusation was only political in nature, DMK spokesperson J Constandine Ravindran said.

On Tuesday, Modi attended multiple events in Kerala and Tamil Nadu, addressing public rallies as well as engaging in official programmes.

Among them was the all important announcement revealing the names of the four IAF pilots-- the astronaut-designates of the country's maiden human spaceflight programme, Gaganyaan.

He bestowed them with the prestigious 'astronaut wings,' at an event at the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), located at Thumba near Kerala capital Thiruvananthapuram.

Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.

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