‘BJP polarising voters on national security’ - Mandi Gobindgarh News

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Friday, March 29, 2019

‘BJP polarising voters on national security’

‘BJP polarising voters on national security’

THE ruling Congress won’t leave anything to chance in winning all the 13 Lok Sabha seats from Punjab which goes to the polls on May 19. The Tribune reporter Rajmeet Singh interviewed senior Congress leader and Cabinet Minister Brahm Mohindra to know his views on the party’s prospects. Excerpts: 

Will the Pulwama attack and subsequent airstrikes impact Punjab that goes to the polls in the last phase? 

I don’t see it happening here or elsewhere. The BJP is clearly polarising voters on the issue of national security. The Narendra Modi led-BJP has nothing else to show. For the surgical strikes, the credit goes to our forces. We should not politicise it. He needs to talk on burning issues like unemployment, farm distress, tax structure etc which affect the common man.    

How will the Congress counter BJP’s onslaught? 

To keep Punjab in the last phase of polling is the BJP plan, but it will prove counter-productive to them. The Capt Amarinder Singh-led Punjab Congress is clearly in an advantageous position and will sweep all 13 seats in the Lok Sabha elections. The people of Punjab have already made up their mind to vote for the Congress due to development works carried out by the party in the past two years.  

What will be the criteria for selecting candidates?  

The Congress has a democratic setup and there is a procedure to select candidates. Already, the names of the candidates from every constituency of Punjab are under consideration of a screening committee. These panels were made after serious deliberations with every section of each constituency. The decision lies with the party central election committee to finalise the candidates. The committee should announce the candidates by the first week of April.   

What are the key issues that the Congress will dwell upon during campaigning? 

Despite poor financial situation, the Congress-led Punjab Government has managed to tackle the drug problem in the state, giving a new ray of life to the youth of the state. As many as 6.5 lakh youth were given employment in the government and private sector. We have tried to improve the fiscal situation of the state. Law and order was maintained in the state and no untoward incident happened in the past two years.  

Why do you think the BJP is facing a challenge here?

The BJP at the Centre has failed to deliver to the masses, especially to middle-class businessman and urban voters who are actually being cheated by the present tax regime of the Modi government. The BJP failed to regain their support in the urban areas and cities of Punjab in the recent local government elections also. Thus, the BJP is no threat to the Congress at all. The 10 years of misrule by the SAD-BJP alliance was enough to expose their follies.

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