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Opponents Built 'Wrong Rumour-Based Image' About BJP In Past 20-25 Years: FM

Quadri was among 91 people who received the Padma Shri award from President Droupadi Murmu on Wednesday at Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Nirmala Sitharaman
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Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday said BJP never discriminated against anyone and never endorsed vote-bank politics, while referring to the Padma Shri award given to Bidar-based craft artist Rasheed Ahmed Quadri.

Quadri was among 91 people who received the Padma Shri award from President Droupadi Murmu on Wednesday at Rashtrapati Bhavan.

In a video that has gone viral on social media, Quadri is heard telling Prime Minister Narendra Modi after getting the award, “I am from Bidar. I waited for five years during the UPA period but it did not happen (getting award). Then I gave up hopes thinking that the BJP will not give me any award but proving me wrong you selected me. For this, I thank you very much.”

Commenting on this incident, Sitharaman said a "wrong rumour-based image" has been built about BJP by opponents in the past 20 to 25 years. 

“While the Prime Minister repeatedly says ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas’ and we too say that, we do not endorse vote bank politics. Every citizen is Indian irrespective of the God they worship. This is a classic example. This is the true BJP. We do not discriminate against anyone,” the Finance Minister said.

She added that poor people, farmers, Dalits and women have been getting the benefits of the Ujjwala scheme that provides LPG connections to women of families who live below the poverty line.

Sitharaman also said that the Prime Minister had visited Karnataka 32 times since 2015 to  date, including seven times this year. 

Assembly elections to the Karnataka Legislative Assembly are scheduled to take place on May 10. 

Rubbishing the Opposition's allegations that Modi never came to the state when it was in distress, especially when there were floods or landslides, and visited only during elections, Sitharaman, a Rajya Sabha member from the State, asked, “Visiting 32 times since five-six years is not a proof for you that he stood by the State? Were there elections 32 times in Karnataka?”

-With PTI Input

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