Maharashtra Congress challenges Modi's claims

Last Updated: Mon, Mar 04, 2013 14:00 hrs

Mumbai, March 4 (IANS) The Maharashtra Congress Monday picked holes in the speech delivered by Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi Sunday at the BJP's national executive meet in New Delhi.

Maharasthra Pradesh Congress Committee spokesperson Sachin Sawant took umbrage at Modi's statement claiming Gujarat had successfully plugged leaks in the Gujrat State Electricity Board to make it a profitable venture.

"The fact is quite different. A team of Paschim Gujarat Vij Company Ltd., headed by chief engineer J.B. Parekh had visited MahaVitaran's franchise in Bhiwandi in Thane to study the revenue collection efficiency model. The team also sought MahaVitaran's help to replicate this model in its loss-making area in western Gujarat," Sawant said in a statement.

"It is not Gujarat but Maharashtra which created a model which should be emulated by all other states in the country, including those ruled by the BJP," Sawant said.

Through this model, Maharashtra has increased its revenue collection efficiency from 60 percent in 2007 to around 99 percent in 2012, besides slashing distribution losses from 44 percent to around 17 percent, he said.

Sawant also challenged Modi's claim that the BJP-ruled Chhattisgarh had created a model for tribal development, which the rest of the country, especially Congress-ruled states must emulate.

"Modi should practise what he preaches. Fifty percent of Gujarat's population faces malnutrition while 61 percent of its tribal population is malnourished," Sawant alleged.

Referring to Modi's satisfaction that his model of development was being compared with developed countries like Germany, Sawant said the chief minister was "mistaken".

"It is not the (Gujarat) development model but Modi's style of propaganda that is being compared with (Joseph) Goebbels, the most popular minister in Hitler's Germany," Sawant added sarcastically.

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