Modi, who has accused the UPA government of poor governance, said if the country has to be steered out of the present mess, it needs a "strong government" with a person who can lead from the front.

"If you want to see the country strong, if you want a strong government in Delhi, then check whether your name is on the voter list," he said while urging the youth to exercise their right to vote.

In his 65-minute-long address, Modi made several references to former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who was considered a moderate in the BJP, and to the "true secularism" prevailing among Indian Armed Forces.

"The politics of vote banks has become disgusting in our country. Politicians who want to divide the society through vote bank politics, should learn true secularism from our armed forces," he told the rally attended by former Army chief Gen VK Singh and a large number of ex-servicemen.

Training his guns at the Centre, Modi said the border troubles with Pakistan and China were not because of any shortcomings in the Army. "The problem is in Delhi. And hence the solution to this problem has to be found in Delhi itself. The problem will be solved only when a competent, patriotic and people-oriented government is formed at the Centre," he said.

Modi tells Pak to shun anti-India attitude

Narendra Modi told Pakistan to shun its anti-India attitude and stop backing terrorism against India.  "The rulers in Pakistan should resolve that they will not allow terrorists to (operate) in Pakistan for 10 years, will not protect terrorists, will not allow its soil to be the breeding ground for terrorists,” he said.

"I can say with authority that if this happens, Pakistan will see the progress that it has not seen in the last 60 years (since it got independence)," he said.

Modi said Pakistan had "converted India into a war zone through its war mindset and support for terrorism." Earlier, the war used to take place on the border. But when you (Pakistan) could not defeat the Indian Army, you started going for killing innocent citizens.

"Killing innocents through cross border terrorism is neither going to help Pakistan nor India,” he said. Amid cheers, Modi went on: "You cannot progress with anti-India tirade. You cannot progress on this basis... For you own interests and for the youth of your country, you should rethink the wrong path you have chosen in the last 60 years and step back."

"I want to tell the rulers whether it is of Bangladesh, India or Pakistan: if we have to fight, we should fight against poverty, illiteracy and other ills,” the Chief Minister said.
Thousands of people, including former soldiers, turned up for Modi's first public rally as the BJP's prime ministerial candidate.


Latest News from India News Desk