Prime Minister Narendra Modi today slammed the opposition for allegedly trying to break up society and put hurdles, "from the Parliament to the streets," in the governments' efforts to uplift the poor.
Without mentioning the RJD-Congress combine in Bihar, Modi lauded Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for his "fight against the corrupt and anti-social forces in the state" and said the Centre stood firmly behind his efforts.
"From the streets to Parliament, roadblocks are being created in the government's work. While the Centre is working towards uniting people, opponents are working towards breaking the society," he said here.
The Prime Minister was addressing over 20,000 Swachhagrahis (cleanliness volunteers) at the concluding ceremony of 'Champaran Satyagraha' centenary celebrations.
The PM's remarks came in the wake of recent disruption of parliamentary proceedings by opposition parties over issues like dilution of SC/ST Act and their support to the "Bharat Bandh" called by Dalit and tribal organizations, which resulted in violence in several parts of the country.
Lauding the Bihar's Nitish Kumar government, Modi said, "This government has put an end to the culture of keeping files on hold. The government is completing every mission, every resolve with the help of the people. But this is troubling those who are not able to accept the change."
"There are elements who are worried at the sight of improvement in the condition of the poor. They feel that if the poor are empowered, it would no longer be possible to mislead them with lies. Hence, attempts are being made to put hurdles in the way of the government, from the Parliament to the streets," the Prime Minister said.
While the government is working towards taking all people along, "our opponents are trying to pit one section against the other", Modi said.
"But I will laud Nitish ji for his patience and good governance and the way he is fighting anti-social elements, it is not easy," he said during his nearly 50-minute speech, which he began in Bhojpuri, much to the delight of the local people.
Modi asserted that the Centre was working in tandem with the Bihar government for the economic development of the state and the eastern region as a whole.
The Prime Minister also launched a number of schemes related to railways, roads, petroleum and sanitation to mark the occasion of Champaran Satyagrah'.
Praising the "Swachh Bharat Abhiyan" initiatives of the government, he said, "I have been told that Bihar, under the leadership of Nitish Kumar and (Deputy CM) Sushil Kumar Modi, has succeeded in constructing more than eight lakh toilets in just past one week we can look forward to making India free of filth by Gandhi Jayanti next year."
He also recalled that the state had "showed the way to the entire nation" on three occasions - the Champaran Satyagraha movement of Mahatma Gandhi, the Bhoodan movement of Acharya Vinoba Bhave and the valiant and successful fight against the Emergency, led by Jayaprakash Narayan.
Those who shared the dais with the Prime Minister today included the CM, the Deputy CM, Bihar Governor Satya Pal Mallik and Union ministers Ram Vilas Paswan, Uma Bharati, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Radha Mohan Singh, Giriraj Singh, Ashwini Kumar Choubey and S S Ahluwalia.
The Prime Minister also felicitated 10 "Swachhagrahis" from different states - six of them women - on this occasion.
Each "Swachhagrahi" was presented with a cash prize of Rs 51,000, a shawl, a memento and a certificate.
Earlier in the day, the Prime Minister paid floral tributes to a bust of Mahatma Gandhi here. The PM was presented with a Mithila-style painting by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.