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Modi attacks Congress for disrupting Parliament, reducing democracy to joke
Kollam, December 15, 2015
'Defeated' opposition least concerned about development, says Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today targetted the Congress for not allowing Parliament to function through constant disruptions and "reducing democracy to a joke".
Addressing a gathering after unveiling the statue of former Kerala Chief Minister R Shankar here, Mr Modi said those people who were defeated and sent home during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections now seemed to thinking that, now that they were sinking, they would take their countrymen also with them.
"President Pranab Mukherjee had made certain observations in his recent speech in Kolkata. But those Congress leaders who love to quote the President for weeks and months did not do so this time. The President, in his speech, had stated that Parliament was for the three 'D's--debate, dissent and decision," he said.
"However, they want only one 'D', desruption. But for us in the Central government, we want to follow the three 'D's as stated by the President along with a fourth 'D', development," he said.
On the second day of a two-day visit to Kerala, Mr. Modi said the Centre would spare no effort for the development of the state.
To a long list of demands submitted by Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Sanghom (SNDP) general secretary Vellapalli Natesan that included development of Sabari Mala as a national pilgrimage centre, Mr Modi said he was unable to make any announcements as Parliament was in session.
"Whether Parliament functions or not, convention demands that no announcements are made outside the House when it is in session," he added.
The Prime Minister said there are political leaders who are forgotten barely two hours after their death, there are some who are forgotten during their lifetime itself and there are others who live on in people's memories long after their passing away. One such leader was R Shankar, the third Chief Minister of Kerala, he said.
"Shankar had served only two years in the post. But he tried to follow the path set by Sree Narayana Guru for the upliftment of the poor and the downtrodden throughout his life. There are politicians who adopt a 'practical' approach to save themselves from being unseated by compromising on issues. Shankar, however, refused to be one of them. For him, there was no question of compromising on his ideals," he said.
He referred to Shankar setting up the Hindu Maha Sangamam along with Nair Service Society (NSS) leader Mannath Padmanabhan. An invitation was extended to Bharatiya Jan Sangh leader Syama Prasad Mukherjee, who, however, was unable to participate in the conference due to illness. But at a later date, when Mukherjee came to Thiruvananthapuram, Shankar came down to meet him.
Mr Modi said that, as Gujarat Chief Minister, he had visited the samadhi of Sree Narayana Guru and was impressed by the work being carried out by the SNDP to propagate his ideals and vision.
Meanwhile, miffed at the withdrawal of invitation to Chief Minister Oommen Chandy at the unveiling of the statue by the SNDP, organisers of the function, the Congress held a prayer meeting in Thiruvananthapuram.
Mr Chandy said Shankar was a prominent Congress leader who laid the foundations of social welfare in the state and it was not right to drag his name into controversy. That was why the Congress had decided to hold the prayer meeting.
Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president V .M. Sudheeran said Mr Natesan and the Sangh Parivar had turned the statue unveiling into a function disrespecting the memory of Shankar. "How can it be termed as a private function? SNDP and Shankar belong to the people. Mr Natesan was trying to convert the SNDP and SN Trust into his own private limited company," he alleged.
State Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said attempts were being made to portray Shankar as an RSS leader. "Tomorrow, they may make Mahatma Gandhi also into an RSS leader," he remarked.
The prayer meeting in front of Shankar's statue in Thiruvananthapuram was organised by the Congress as a mark of protest. Shankar's son Mohan Shankar also participated in it.
Later, Mr Modi visited Sivagiri Mutt at Varkala in Kerala. He paid homage to Sri Narayana Guru, first at the Maha Samadhi Mandir and then at Vaidika Mutt.
Addressing the gathering there, the Prime Minister said he is fortunate to have received the blessings of Sri Narayana Guru. He said Sri Narayana Guru is his inspiration to work for the poor, deprived and downtrodden sections of society.