Seeking votes for the SAD-BJP alliance in Punjab on Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi invoked the issue of security threat from neighbouring Pakistan and asked people to elect a “strong government in the border state”.
In his second rally in the state since polls were declared, the PM said, “The elections in Punjab are not just to determine the future of the state, but are equally important for the future of India. Punjab being on the border, the neighbouring country remains on lookout for opportunities to strike.
“Punjab is very important to safeguard the security of India as the state has to suffer through misadventure by the neighbouring country. We need a strong government. This capability is only with Parkash Singh Badal.”
In the past year, Pakistan-sponsored terrorists twice sneaked into Punjab and carried out terrorist attacks at Dinanagar and Pathankot airbase where security forces and citizens were killed. Also, to assuage hurt Sikh sentiments following several incidents of desecration of religious scriptures last year, Modi promised probe into the cases.
Targeting Congress, the PM accused it of branding Sikh youths as terrorists during and after the era of militancy. “With it, wherever Sikhs used to go in India or abroad, they were seen as terrorists,” he said.