Karkare sacrificed his life, she shouldn’t have made that comment

In an interaction with Kiran D. Tare, Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis acknowledged that agrarian crisis and the lack of jobs are prominent issues this election. However, he is hopeful that a silent’ Modi wave will help the BJP win the Lok Sabha election. Excerpts:

Q. Is the Modi wave fading now?

In 2014, the Modi wave was primarily amid the middle class. This time, there is a Modi wave in the lower strata of society. This class does not show euphoria; this Modi wave is silent.

Q. Then why has the BJP fielded Pragya Singh Thakur, an accused in the Malegaon blasts case?

The National Investigation Agency has told the court that it does not have any evidence against her. In 2007-08, terrorism-related activities were at their peak and a number of people were arrested then. The Muslims felt that the then Congress-led government had taken a hard stand against them. The Hindu terror narrative was introduced to negate the anti-Congress feeling among the masses. Pragya Singh Thakur’s candidature is an answer to those who insulted the Hindus.

Q. What is your stand on her comments on the late Hemant Karkare?

She should not have made that statement. He was certainly one of the finest police officers; he sacrificed his life for the country.

Q. Are you going to probe her allegations against police officers?

We will not initiate any inquiry based on statements made before television cameras. If she files a complaint, we will initiate an inquiry.

Q. Senior prosecutor Rohini Salian had alleged that she was under pressure to go slow in this case.

I will not comment on her statement. Some prosecutors tried to prove the existence of Hindu terror; they will be exposed in future.

Q. There is distress among the farmers due to an agrarian crisis. There are very few jobs.

The agrarian crisis will play a major role during this election. But people will also compare our performance with that of the previous government. They will vote for Modiji. A EPFO survey has stated that in the past six months 89 lakh jobs were created in India and Maharashtra had 26 per cent share in it. The CII and FICCI surveys say that 24 per cent jobs were created in the state.

Q. Is everything fine in the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance?

There were disputes among the workers of the parties, but the voters wanted this alliance. Now, we are working together. Besides, I have cordial relations with Uddhavji.

Q. Do you think the BJP has chances of winning in other states?

We are not going to lose. Don’t be surprised if we get more than 20 seats in West Bengal. In Maharashtra, we can get more than 42 seats. In case we fail to do so, it will be because of our inability to handle the situation politically.


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