NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi revelled in his party's victory in the Tripura Assembly elections, and launched a scathing attack on the politics of the Left. He said the Northeast would show the way to the rest of the country when it comes to development.
Modi's comments came at an address he delivered at the BJP's new headquarters on New Delhi's Deen Dayal Upadhyay Marg, hours after the decisively wrested Tripura from the Left, which had ruled the state for 25 years.
Modi began by not speaking. He said he would remain silent as the azaan sounded from a nearby mosque. When he resumed, he dedicated the victory in Tripura to BJP workers who were allegedly killed by Left forces.
"The sun is red when it is setting. But when it rises, it turns saffron. This is a new age for the Northeast," he declared.
"When you are in politics you need to know how to handle defeats. Looking at the way the Left has reacted to the verdict, it seemed that they need to learn sportsmanship. The people have watched what has happened, they have seen how things were done. And, they have responded with their votes," said Modi, to loud
"Whether it is Kerala or West Bengal or Tripura, they are not those who will address things politically. They are those people who will take the path of violence. And if we raise an arm to defend ourselves, there will be accusations of vendetta," he said.
He also used the stage to take shots at the Congress, noting that the Grand Old Party has perhaps never had as small a political footprint as it does now. "There are some in the Congress who rise through the ranks, but each steps they take, they get smaller in stature. We must do our best to ensure that such a Congress culture never enters the ranks of our party," he said, in an attack on dynasty politics in the Congress.