• youtube
  • facebook
  • twitter

BJP’s vote share in South will increase in 2024 Lok Sabha polls: PM Modi

In an interview with the Asianet News Network, PM Modi also addressed the alleged narrative of the BJP being a party of the upper caste. 

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivered a scathing critique of governments in south India on Saturday while expressing confidence that the BJP’s vote share in the south would increase in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections compared to previous polls.

In an interview with the Asianet News Network, PM Modi also addressed the alleged narrative of the BJP being a party of the upper caste.

“A narrative has been created in our country for a long time that the BJP means upper caste party. But the reality is that in the BJP, most are scheduled castes (SCs), most are scheduled tribes (STs), and most are other backward classes (OBCs). All these are, and most are OBCs in our ministry. Then they said that it’s a Bharat Urban Party. Today, the entire character of my party is such that it has the maximum number of rural people,” he said.

“Then they said this character was created because the BJP is a Puraan-Panthi (or old-school) party and can’t think of anything new. But today, if anyone is leading the digital movement in the world, it is the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government. So this misconception that they are spreading is ‘wrong’,” the PM said.

Speaking on the BJP’s electoral performance in south India, the PM said, “You see Telangana, where our vote share has doubled. In the 2019 parliamentary elections, the BJP emerged as the single largest party in the South. The BJP has the highest number of MPs. I believe that in 2024 (the Lok Sabha elections), the vote share is going to increase compared to the previous elections. Seats will also increase.”

Turning to regional issues, Prime Minister Modi condemned corruption within cooperative banks in Kerala, pledging decisive action against wrongdoers. He emphasised equitable development and refuted allegations of neglect towards southern states like Karnataka and Kerala.

“Secondly, the identity of the governments in the South—whether it is Congress, the LDF (Left Democratic Front), or the DMK (Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam)—what is their identity in all places? Today we (BJP) are in power in Puducherry, which is in the south. It should be known, we are in government. And our MPs win from Andaman and Nicobar, where most of our south Indian and Bengali brothers live. Hence, this simplification that is happening… Now, what is the style of their governments? Theirs are completely family-run governments, and there is rampant corruption. Now you see what the situation is in the south,” PM Modi said.

“When I go there during elections, why do I talk about cooperative societies? It’s the biggest crime against a poor man; it cannot be forgiven. Poor families keep their money in cooperative banks, put in societies hoping to get good returns. He feels that he would keep his hard-earned money for his daughter’s marriage—it’s the money of fishermen, farmers, and labourers. There are around 300 cooperative banks that are completely run by lefties. And about one lakh crore rupees of common and poor people are lying there. Their operators used this money to buy properties. We have just attached around Rs 90 crore and I’m currently taking legal advice on how to return this money to people who kept their money in the bank. I requested ED to start returning their money and attaching the properties of those who were looting these people,” he said.

“We have returned Rs 17,000 crore of seized money to whoever it was. This is not an election issue,” he added.

When asked about Kerala, PM Modi said that from the time of the BJP and Jana Sangh, “we want to serve in every part of the country. Work where there is political benefit, and don’t where it isn’t profitable—these are not our principles.”

“Jana Sangh’s biggest national convention was held in Kerala in 1967. For us, Kerala is not only a field to come into power. Kerala is also similar to other areas we serve, and we serve there with equal dedication. Hundreds of our workers were gunned down, and political murders were committed. Even today, we work there with the intention of serving Maa Bharti, and left cadres were convicted by courts for the murder of our people; many of them are in jail. Despite that, be it Kutch, Guwahati, Kashmir or Kanyakumari, every corner of the country is ours,” he said.

He also alleged that there is so much corruption inside Kerala, but the ecosystem there does not allow it to come out.

“You must have seen that in Tripura, the left ruled the state for three to four decades, and when the BJP came to power, people started releasing that they (the left) used to loot them. The BJP is doing so well in Tripura that they are making the BJP win from there again and again. The same is the case with Bengal and Kerala; there is so much corruption, but they have made an ecosystem that doesn’t let anything come out,” PM Modi added.