GUWAHATI, Sept 17 - Accusing the Congress party of failing to work for the uplift of the masses during its decades-long rule, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar today said that India has made significant strides under the Narendra Modi-led dispensation.
Addressing a �Rashtriya Ekta Abhiyan� public awareness public meet organised by the State BJP at Azara here today, Javadekar also castigated the Congress and its former president Rahul Gandhi over their stand on the issue of abrogation of Article 370.
Javadekar said that the Congress�s long rule witnessed massive corruption and mismanagement both at the Centre and in the states.
He said that the present dispensation has cracked down hard on corruption. �Now the corrupt are either in jail or out in bail,� he said.
Congratulating the Prime Minister on his birthday, the Union Minister said that Modi�s life clearly shows that hard work and dedication can help any person in achieving a lot.
He said that Modi rose from the ranks of the poor and the downtrodden to become the Prime Minister of a country of 130 crore people.
�This is not the Congress party where leadership roles are reserved for members of the �family�. In the BJP people achieve their position on merit... Even the opposition now feels that BJP will come back to power once more in 2024,� Javadekar said.
He added that the North East and Jammu & Kashmir were kept backward by the Congress. �But now under the government of Sarbananda Sonowal, Assam has witnessed rapid progress,� said Javadekar, who is the Union Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change and Information and Broadcasting.
Appreciating the role of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister and BJP president Amit Shah on the issue of Article 370, Javadekar said that abrogation of the contentious law will bring opportunities for the people of Jammu & Kashmir.
He said the people of Jammu & Kashmir will now get equal benefits and enjoy rights on a par with citizens of other states and cited the example of the Right to Education Act as well as other social welfare schemes.
Javadekar said India�s unity has been strengthened following the repeal of Article 370.
Criticising the Congress and Rahul Gandhi, he said that the views expressed on the issue by the opposition party have been used by Pakistan for its own selfish interest.
Citing the surgical strikes carried out by the Army in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, the senior BJP leader said that Modi is the first Prime Minister of the country who has given such a free hand to the armed forces to strike at the enemy.
�Pakistan is now at its wits� end... The Pakistani Prime Minister is clueless and confused... He has accepted that Pakistan will lose in case of a war with India. Pakistan has already lost four wars with India. It will lose again in case of a war,� he said.
Javadekar cited recent statements of Shah to make it clear that illegal immigrants will not be allowed to stay in Assam. He added that the NDA regime�s social welfare schemes have benefited crores of people across India and said that so far over eight crore women have been provided LPG connections, ten crore households have got toilets and 20 crore people have availed MUDRA loans during the period of the NDA dispensation.
Javadekar said cases of rhino poaching have come to an end in Kaziranga National Park of late and assured of providing funds to set up more highland areas to facilitate wild animals to take shelter during floods.
State BJP president Ranjeet Kumar Dass and NEDA convenor and State Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma also addressed the rally.