Activist state

‘Urban Naxals’ try to enter Gujarat, state will destroy them: PM Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Monday that ‘urban Naxals’ are trying to enter Gujarat by changing their appearance, but the state will destroy them

The Prime Minister was speaking after laying the foundation stone for the country’s first bulk drug park in Bharuch district, Gujarat.

The project will play a key role in ensuring import substitution and making India self-sufficient for bulk drugs, which accounted for more than 60 percent of total pharmaceutical imports in 2021-22, according to a government statement.

Modi said the Urban Naxals are trying to enter the state with new appearances. They have changed costumes. They trick our innocent and energetic youth into following them.”

The Urban Naxals set foot from above. We will not let them destroy our young generation. We must warn our children against the urban Naxals who have set themselves the task of destroying the country. They are agents of foreign powers. Gujarat will not bow their heads against them, Gujarat will destroy them, he said in a veiled attack on the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).

The Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP is trying to make inroads into BJP-ruled Gujarat, where Assembly polls are due later this year.

The term Urban Naxal is often used by certain segments of the political spectrum to describe sympathizers of the cause of Naxalism as well as certain social activists.

Prime Minister Modi said that “people with Naxal mentality” did their best to stop the Sardar Sarovar dam project.

He had alleged last month that “urban Naxals and anti-development elements” with political backing had blocked the construction of the Sardar Sarovar dam on the Narmada River in Gujarat for many years by waging a campaign that it would harm the environment.

Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel had also earlier alleged that “urban Naxals” oppose the Sardar Sarovar dam project. He had called activist and leader Narmada Bachao Andolan Medha Patkar an “urban Naxal”.

Notably, Patkar had unsuccessfully contested the 2014 Lok Sabha polls in Mumbai North East as an AAP candidate.

On Monday, Modi said, “I had to specially tell our Adivasi brothers that Naxalism started in (West) Bengal, Jharkhand, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, parts of Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Andhra, Telangana and Gadchiroli in Maharashtra… Naxalism is destroying the lives of our young adivasi.”

“They made them hold guns and instigated them…there was a crisis everywhere,” he said.

Modi said at that time (when he was Chief Minister of Gujarat), he was challenged not to let Naxalism take hold.

“I had to save the lives of our Adivasi brothers and sisters who live all over the eastern belt (of Gujarat) – from Ambaji to Umargam. I had to work hard to make sure they did not suffer from a disease like this. And for that, we supported the development of the tribal areas,” Modi said.

The prime minister said he could say with satisfaction that the tribal people in the state had heeded his words and trusted him.

“As a result, Naxalism could not enter in this way. For this, I thank our Adivasi brothers and sisters and express my gratitude to them,” Modi said.

The prime minister said earlier that Gujarat even has a tribal community chief minister.

“But from Umargam to Ambaji, the schools didn’t even have the science stream. If there is no science (education) in class 10 and 12, however you say reservation, these children become doctors or engineers?” He asked.

Modi said his government’s efforts have resulted in tribal youths becoming doctors and engineers and piloting planes.

“Thousands of them are getting scholarships. We have universities named after the adivasis – Birsa Munda Tribal University and Govind Guru University. our young adivasis,” he said.

Modi said it was thanks to the collective efforts of the Indian people, especially the younger generation, farmers, workers, small entrepreneurs and industrialists that India’s economy now ranks fifth, up from 10th. position when he took office as Prime Minister in 2014.

“And not only that, when he rose from sixth to fifth position, the country felt a special pride because those who occupied the fifth position were those who ruled us for 250 years. We were their slaves, and now our young people have taken my country ahead,” he said.

For this, the younger generation, farmers, workers, small businessmen, small industrialists, they all deserve fame, he said.

“When the country has reached fifth (position) from 10th, then the rights belong to you and your efforts,” he added.

Prime Minister Modi also hailed the contribution of Bharuch district to the development of Gujarat and India.

“Today my Bharuch is known for industry, commerce, ports… the first bulk drug park in the country is going to be set up in Gujarat, and that too in Bharuch,” he said .

He also said that the foundation stone of the airport in Ankleshwar (in Bharuch district) was being laid which he tried to get from the Center when he was Chief Minister of Gujarat , but “the rulers of Bharuch who sat in Delhi did not listen to him.

Bharuch has more industries than many small states in the country. The number of jobs provided by Bharuch is a record in itself, he said.

With the new airport, development will accelerate. Work on the airport will be completed quickly with the “dual-powered governments of Narendra-Bhupendra”, the prime minister said.

(Only the title and image of this report may have been edited by Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)