Terming Prime Minister Narendra Modi “sapnon ka saudagar” (merchant of dreams), the Congress on Sunday said that Modi has not fulfilled any promises he made to the people of Himachal Pradesh during his 2014 Lok Sabha campaign. “In 2014, Mr. Narendra Modi came as a merchant of dreams and made several attractive promises. Today the people of ‘Dev Bhoomi’ Himachal want to know what happened to those promises,” Congress Spokesman Randeep Singh Surjewala said. “On April 29, 2014, at a rally in Solan, Modiji had promised to steeply hike import duty on apples to protect the local apple orchards. But now more than three lakh tonne of apples are being imported from US, China and New Zealand. Can he explain it?” he said.

Randeep Surjewala said that in another rally on the same day at Palampur, Modi had promised to make the hill state a “paradise of tourism” but the Centre has not given any funds nor any new project to develop tourism in the state. “In another rally at Mandi on April 29, 2014, Modiji said his government would build Himalayan rail network from Chandigarh to Ladakh. After 41 months, the Railway Ministry says they have no such plans. Why such falsehood?”

Taking another dig at the Narendra Modi government, Surjewala said on April 27 this year, the Prime Minister had announced that an air ticket from Delhi to Shimla under the ‘Udaan’ scheme would cost just Rs 2,036, but this scheme was never implemented on the ground.

“Modiji had said that now even persons who wear ‘hawai chappals’ (those not quite well-off) can now fly in ‘hawai jahaaz’ (aeroplane). But after six months of this announcement, the reality is that mostly there is no flight between Delhi and Shimla or if there is one, the fare is over Rs 15,000,” he said.

He said that the Bharatiya Janata Party’s “anti-people” face has been exposed and the public of Himachal Pradesh would give it a “befitting reply for its lies, deception and drama”.