PM Modi to address public rallies in Maharashtra's Jalgaon and Sakoli (File image)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today challenged the opposition on its complaints about the government's move on Jammu and Kashmir, asking them to reverse it "if they dare". "Do you think anyone has the courage to bring it back? Will their political career survive if they dare to?" he said in what was seen as a direct challenge to Rahul Gandhi, who is also campaigning in the state today. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi also addressed rallies in Chandivali, Dharavi and Latur areas of Maharashtra. The voting for the 288-member Maharashtra Assembly will be held on October 21 in a single phase. The counting of votes will take place on October 24.
Here are the highlights of PM Modi and Rahul Gandhi's rallies:
The country can never progress by dividing its own people and we saw this in last 5 years. The more they divide, the more the unemployment, economic crisis widens.
If India's future is to be made, farmers or jobless youth, small-medium business people will make it. If any government wants to take the country forward then we need to work with them. Congress knows how to work. We don't indulge in false promises, says Rahul Gandhi.
The objective of demonetisation, GST was to take money from pockets of poor and give it to rich. When youth ask for jobs, govt tells them to watch moon, says Rahul Gandhi, says Rahul Gandhi at Ausa, Latur.
Rahul Gandhi speaking in Ausa, Latur said has acche din arrived?. There are currently 2 issues- farm crisis, employment. But you don't see or hear about it in media. Has your loans being waived offs?
PM Modi addresses rally in Jalgaon
- Assembly elections in Maharashtra just eight days away, top leadership of both the BJP and the Congress will campaign in the state today. Both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party chief and Union minister Amit Shah are in the state. The Prime Minister has addressed the people in Jalgaon and Amit Shah is in Kolhapur.
- For the Congress, Rahul Gandhi will campaign at two places in Mumbai. This would be the first public appearance by the Congress leader since the Lok Sabha elections. Following the party's abysmal performance, Mr Gandhi had quit the party chief's post.
- The 49-year-old, who has since been accused of "walking away" instead of rebuilding the Congress party, will campaign in seats in Mumbai that the Congress hopes to win - Chandivali and Dharavi.
- The candidates are Naseem Khan and Varsha Gaikwad.
- After the Lok Sabha defeat, the Congress has seen the complete absence of its top leaders in the Maharashtra campaign. Over the last 3 months the Congress has lost at least 8 members, who are contesting from BJP and Shiv Sena.
- Last week, the Congress faced revolt from a key leader of the party in the state, where the party won only one seat out of 48. The factionalism, which was one of the causes of the defeat, did not abate and has now flared up over ticket distribution. In a series of tweets, senior Maharashtra leader Sanjay Nirupam declared that he would stay away from the campaign and threatened to quit.
- The faction-ridden party has forged an alliance with Sharad Pawar's Nationalist Congress party.
- Both Uddhav Thackeray and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had attacked Rahul Gandhi for holidaying in Bangkok during the campaign period.
Haryana polls: Tough poll battle on cards for BJP in Thanesar
- There are over 20 candidates in the fray for Haryana's Thanesar assembly seat, but the fight to watch out for would be between BJP MLA Subhash Sudha and Ashok Arora, who recently switched to Congress from INLD, to challenge the sitting legislator in his pocket borough.
- Both Mr Sudha and Mr Arora joined active politics in early 90s as workers of the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD). While Mr Arora was elected as MLA from Thanesar in 1990 through a by-election, Mr Sudha became its municipal council chairman in 1994.
BJP releases Haryana poll manifesto
- The BJP released its election manifesto for the October 21 Haryana assembly polls and said this was a "commitment paper" that represented all sections of society.
- The BJP, which described its poll manifesto as a "Sankalp Patra", promised to give collateral free loan of up to Rs 3 lakh to people belonging to the scheduled caste community, if voted to power again.
- It also pledged to give interest free crop loan of up to Rs 3 lakh to farmers.
- "It is a commitment paper and it is a serious and studied document. A lot of effort has gone into its preparation. This is a pragmatic and practical paper," BJP national working president J P Nadda said.
- "This commitment paper represents all sections of the society. Its focus is on addressing a person sitting on the last pedestal," he said.
- The party also promised to provide skill training with an outlay of Rs 500 crore to 25 lakh youths.
- There will be old age pension of Rs 3,000, Haryana will be made tuberculosis free and farmers'' income will be doubled by 2022, as per the manifesto.
- The focus will also be on comprehensive healthcare, said Mr Nadda, adding that 2,000 health and wellness centre will be set up.
- He said 1,000 "khel" (sports) nurseries will also be set up in the state, if the party is voted to power again.
Rahul Gandhi to campaigning in Nuh in Haryana
- The Assembly elections in Haryana are a do-or-die situation for the Congress coming months after the party faced a rout in the Lok Sabha polls and lost all its 10 seats.
- Days after the announcement of the October 21 poll date, Congress veteran weighed in on the party to replace Ashok Tanwar with Kumari Selja as the new Haryana Congress President. A disgruntled Mr Tanwar has since quit the party.
- Asked about Mr Tanwar's desertion, Ms Selja told IANS, "All is well in the Congress, there is more infighting in the BJP than in the Congress."
- The party also released its manifesto on Saturday promising among other things a farm loan waiver, unemployment allowance, 33 per cent reservation to women in government jobs and private institutions in the state, 50 per cent reservation for women in Panchayati Raj institutions, municipality corporations and city councils; scholarships to students from the Scheduled Castes and extremely Backward Classes and 50 per cent rebate in house tax for properties owned by women.
- Rahul Gandhi will be campaigning for his party candidate in Nuh in Haryana on Monday. Asked is he will campaign in other places, Ms Selja said, "We will inform the media as we get his programme."
- Ahead of the Assembly elections, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis kick-started "Mumbai walks with BJP" (''Mumbai Chalali BJP Sobat'') campaign at Marine Drive.
- The aim of the campaign is to garner voters'' support for the BJP ahead of state assembly polls scheduled for October 21.
- Scores of people and party workers donning white t-shirts walked along with Devendra Fadnavis.
- Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is seeking re-election from Nagpur South West constituency. He is up against former BJP MLA and now Congress candidate Ashish Deshmukh.
We seek 5 more years in Maharashtra: PM Modi
- Ahead of the Assembly elections slated for October 21, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address public rallies in Maharashtra Jalgaon and Sakoli.
- He will be campaigning for the second consecutive term for the BJP-led government in the state.
- Congress leader Rahul Gandhi is also scheduled to address rallies in Chandivali, Dharavi and Latur areas of Maharashtra.
- PM Modi tweeted that the NDA is going to the people, based on the stellar work of the government in the state.
- He said that Devendra Fadnavis's government is seeking 5 more years to serve the state.
- BJP is contesting on 150 seats and its ally Shiv Sena on 124 constituencies in Maharashtra. Alliance partners of BJP have fielded 14 candidates on party's lotus symbol.
- Meanwhile, the Congress is contesting the polls in alliance with the NCP. Both parties are contesting on 125 seats each in the 288-member Assembly and its allies on the remaining 38 seats.
- The voting for the 288-member Assembly will be held on October 21 in a single phase. The counting of votes will take place on October 24.