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PM Modi to Rajat Sharma in Salaam India show: 'God has ordained that I should continue to work till 2047'

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his biggest interview this election season with India TV's Chairman and Editor-in-Chief Rajat Sharma spoke on BJP's 400-plus seats target, Pakistan, revocation of Article 370, his government's action against corrupt politicians, among others issues.

Edited By: Shashwat Bhandari @ShashBhandari New Delhi Updated on: May 24, 2024 0:06 IST

Modi with Rajat Sharma: Brimming with confidence, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said today, "I believe God has ordained that I should work 24x7 till 2047 to achieve the aim of a Viksit Bharat (Developed India)." He was replying to questions from Rajat Sharma at 'Salaam India' show.

Modi said, "I feel, God Almighty has sent me for a special purpose. God has sent me to achieve the objective of a Viksit Bharat by 2047. God is showing me the path, God is giving me the energy. I am fully confident I will achieve that target by 2047 and until that target is achieved, God will not call me back (Jab Tak Poora Nahin Hota, Mujhe Parmatma Waapas Nahin Bulayenge). I do not have any other place in this world now except this." Modi is presently 74 years old.

Modi said, "400 Paar" is a slogan not coined by BJP, but by the people. "We were already 400 in strength in Parliament during the last five years, given the support that we got from other parties. Any child who gets 95 per cent marks will naturally strive for a higher target."

Level-playing field

Modi hit out at Congress and other opposition parties for complaining that they have not been given a level-playing field in this election. He reminded how the then Chief Election Commissioner (TN Seshan) postponed polling across the country in 1991 for 22 days after Congress leader Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated in Sriperumbudur on May 21, 1991, when only one round of polling was over. Elections were postponed till mid-June and voting finally took place on June 12 and 15.

"Was that a level-playing field?", asked PM Modi. He said, "Normally, when a candidate dies, election in that constituency is countermanded, but in 1991, election across the country was postponed and polling resumed only after the funeral of the departed leader was widely publicized".

"The same person (TN Seshan), after retirement, fought against our party president ( LK Advani) in Gandhinagar in 1999 on a Congress ticket", Modi said.

Asked why two serving chief ministers (in Delhi and Jharkhand) were jailed when election process was on, Modi replied, "We did not send them to jail. The courts sent the two chief ministers to jail. We do not have the power to send somebody to jail or keep anybody in jail. Courts have the powers. Look at what Supreme Court said in the ex-Jharkhand CM (Hemant Soren) case. Look at what Delhi High Court said about ex-minister (Manish Sisodia) in money laundering case. People have seen huge loads of cash in crores seized by the Enforcement Directorate. All of us should honour ED for seizing Rs 2,200 crores in cash, which can be filled up in at least 70 tempos, while during 10-years of UPA rule, ED had seized only Rs 34 lakh cash which can be stuffed in a school bag."

Modi hit out at the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in Delhi liquor case, saying, "They wanted to spoil the lives of children by opening liquor outlets near schools, offered one liquor bottle free for every bottle sold, because they were getting the commission on the number of bottles sold... Let me make this very clear. I won the 2014 elections only because I had promised to take action against the corrupt. I was elected only because of that. Big leaders used to get away scot-free. I do not run this government for getting nice editorials or good TV headlines. My government works to stamp out corruption."

Pakistan

On Pakistan's allegation about Indian hand behind "targeted assassinations by unknown killers" of terrorists in that country, Modi replied, "That is not the issue. I know, people of Pakistan are nowadays worried. I also know that I am the root cause of their worries (Main Jaanta Hoon Unki Pareshani Ka Kaaran Main Hoon). But I also know that some people in our own country are also worried. Woh rote Rahen Samajh Me Aa Sakta Hai, Yahan Waale Kyun rote hain, Main Samajh Nahin Sakta Hoon (I can understand when they weep, but I cannot understand why our people weep)."

Modi cited the example of how "the leader of a respected party, that ruled our country for 60 years, and during whose rule 26/11 Mumbai attacks took place, once alleged that it was not Pakistani terrorist Ajmal Kasab and his men, but our own people who killed our own countrymen. This is really saddening. How can such a leader give a statement in favour of Pakistan and Ajmal Kasab? My head hangs in shame whenever I hear such remark. I feel pained."

On Mani Shankar Aiyar's remark that India should accord respect to Pakistan because it has atom bombs, Modi, in a light-hearted manner replied, "Taaqat Main Khud Pakistan Jaake Check Karke Aaya Hoon (I've myself gone to Pakistan and checked their power). I landed in Lahore without any security checks, and one of their TV reporters was saying Hai Allah, Modi has landed in Pakistan without any visa. Yes this was in their live debates. Main Kyun Nahin Ja Sakta, Woh Mera Desh Tha Kizi Zamaane Mein (Why can't I do, Pakistan was part of our country at one time)"

On one Shiv Sena (UBT) leader predicting that Modi may send trainload of devotees to the new Ram Temple in Ayodhya before elections and Pakistan may blow up the train, leading to riots and making Modi's election easier, Modi replied, "Why can't journalists go and ask that leader, why he is not taking medicines or get a medical check-up done. Was any train blown up? Did riots take place? He should get his diseased mindset checked."

ALSO READ 'Pakistan ki taakat ko mai khud check karke aaya hu': PM Modi tells Rajat Sharma in season's biggest interview

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