Congress following in Jinnah's footsteps, will destroy India: Shivraj

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(Eds: Adding details) Naharkatia, Mar 15 (PTI) Instead of following Mahatma Gandhi, the Congress was following in 'Jinnah's footsteps', Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said on Monday, asserting that it would 'destroy' the country.

Addressing a rally in Naharkatia in poll-bound Assam's Dibrugarh district, the senior BJP leader said that the Congress has failed to carry out any developmental work in the Northeastern states since Independence.

'Congress is not following in Mahatma Gandhi's footsteps. Congress and Rahul Gandhi are following in Jinnah's footsteps. And Jinnah's steps will destroy Assam and India,' Chouhan said, referring to the opposition party's alliance with AIUDF in Assam, ISF in West Bengal and IUML in Kerala.

'Congress has allied with Badruddin Ajmal, who has filled Assam with infiltration... He has a perfume business, but is spreading poison in the society... If 'naagraj' and 'saapraj' ally, then Assam cannot be developed,' Chouhan alleged.

He said that the Congress should feel ashamed for joining hands with AIUDF, claiming that even former chief minister Tarun Gogoi did not ally with that party.

'Congress has allied with Muslim League in Kerala and ISF in West Bengal. Congress is doing divide and rule politics,' he claimed.

The BJP leader alleged that Rahul Gandhi is 'dividing India' into north and south, while doing the same politics in Assam, creating differences between different tribes and communities.

'Congress ruled Assam for 55 years, but what has it given? Assam, which was not defeated by the Mughals due to the heroism of Lachit Borphukan (Ahom general), Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi gave only infiltration, violence, terrorism, agitation, hunger and unemployment,' Chouhan alleged.

The Congress has always used illegal immigrants as their vote bank, while Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal took initiatives to curb infiltration into the state, Chouhan alleged.

The Congress will 'become history' under the leadership of Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, he claimed.

'The Congress only knows drama and theatrics. Rahul swam in the sea in Kerala, while Priyanka plucked tea leaves in Assam. She didn't even know that it was off-season! Was there any film shooting going on?' he asked.

Chouhan also targetted Rahul Gandhi over his promise of setting up a fisheries ministry, saying that it is already in place. 'His tube light lit a little late. This party which is so directionless, how will they work for the development of Assam?' Sonowal was also present at the public meeting.

Chouhan was in Naharkatia, which is going to the polls in the first phase on March 27, to campaign for first-time BJP candidate Taranga Gogoi, who will have a triangular contest with Assam Jatiya Parishad (AJP) president Lurinjyoti Gogoi and Congress' former minister Pranatee Phukan.

Sitting AGP MLA Naren Sonowal, part of the BJP-led NDA, is also in a 'friendly contest' against the BJP candidate.

Appealing to the people to vote for the BJP, Chouhan listed out a series of schemes rolled by the governments of his party at the Centre and the state.

'Did Congress do as much work in 55 years as Sarbananda Sonowal did in just five years?' he asked, adding that the BJP government will solve the perennial flood problem of the state by 'shifting floodwaters to lakes and ponds'. PTI TR SOM SOM