Targeting the lack of development and rising corruption in Mizoram during the Congress rule, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday appealed to the people in the state to vote for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
Addressing a public rally in Lunglei, the Prime Minister said that the BJP was the only choice left for the people of the hill state which has witnessed the worst corruption levels during the Congress rule.
"Gati (Speed) and pragati (Development) is the focus of our government. While only 100 km of railway tracks were laid in northeastern states during the Congress rule, the BJP governments are laying railway tracks three times more now," said Modi.
"Apart from railway lines, new airports were also being constructed and old airports were being upgraded to remove the communication bottlenecks in the northeastern region. Works of over Rs 5,000 crore are being undertaken in the telecom sector," he said, adding that better connectivity would not only lead to ease of life but also boost the tourism sector.
Attacking Chief Minister Lalthanhawla, Modi said that while the Centre had sanctioned money for Mizoram, the Congress-led state government had not even bothered to utilise the funds.
"The state government has not been able to utilise funds sanctioned by the Centre. In many cases, the government has also failed to submit utilisation certificates against the funds used.
"The Chief Minister of Mizoram also holds the PWD and Power portfolios but people are still suffering in Mizoram due to bad roads. The state government has failed to harness the power potential. Late Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee sanctioned the Turial dam project in 1998 but I could only dedicate the project to the people of the state last year," he said.
Modi said that Mizoram could become the third power surplus state in the northeast after Tripura and Sikkim if the Turial power project becomes fully functional.
"Due to the corrupt policies of the government, implementation of 28 of the total 46 centrally sponsored schemes were running behind schedule. Similarly, implementation of 20 of the 36 NEC sponsored schemes was running behind schedule," he said.
According to the Prime Minister, the state's New Land Use Policy was an example of corruption as "it testified how the Congress workers and Ministers benefited from it".
"Similarly, the New Economic Development Programme (NEDP) is also a scheme launched by the Congress government in Mizoram to favour party ministers, workers and their supporters".
Meanwhile, according to an analysis by election watchdog, the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), more than half of the 209 candidates contesting the November 28 Mizoram Assembly polls are multimillionaires and nine of the nominees face criminal cases.
According to the analysis that was released on Thursday, a total of 116 candidates are multimillionaires.
The Mizo National Front (MNF) leads the list with 35, followed by the Congress with 33 and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) with 17 such candidates.
MNF's Lalrinenga Sailo contesting from Hachhek in Mamit district is the richest candidate with assets in excess of Rs 100 crore.
The average assets per candidate contesting the polls is Rs 3.11 crore as compared to Rs 2.31 crore in the 2013 polls.
Only nine candidates face criminal cases with three each belonging to the Congress and the MNF and two from the BJP.
On the education front, 142 candidates are graduates or above, 60 are school dropouts and one an illiterate.
Only 18 or merely nine per cent of the candidates are female.
Elections to the 40-member Assembly will be held on November 28 in the predominantly Christian population state where the Congress has been in power since it became a full-fledged state in 1987, except for 10 years -- 1998 to 2008.

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