Seemingly unperturbed by his depiction as Lord Krishna in a Bharatiya Janata Party advertisement in a local newspaper, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Friday flagged off the "Kishan Yatra" aimed at welfare of farmers from Rajkot.
Targetting the Centre for being "insensitive" towards farmers and being "anti-Gujarat", Modi said the policies like banning export of cotton have affected farmers from the state to a great extent.
Modi was most vocal to protest against the ban imposed by the Centre on export of cotton, which was later withdrawn.
"With the ban not only the farmers of the state had to suffer heavy losses but created a shortage of cottonseed oil that led to increase in the prices of other edible oils as well" Modi said.
Criticising the Centre for not allowing construction of gates at Sardar Sarovar project, the chief minister said the United Progressive Alliance government chose so ignoring repeated appeals made in this regard.
"If the government at Centre has any concern for farmers then it should have given permission for construction of gates at Narmada dam," Modi said.
He also claimed that his government has started giving electricity connection in even dark-zone areas in the state. Kishan Yatra, which will traverse a distance of around 2,000 km in Saurashtra region, was launched by state BJP unit president R C Faldu with an objective to create awareness among farmers about adopting scientific methods in tilling to improve their produce.
The yatra was kicked off against the backdrop of a BJP advertisement issued by the party's Amreli district unit president Bharat Kamdar in a vernacular daily, showing Faldu as Arjun and party leaders Vijay Rupani, Purshottam Rupala and I K Jadeja as the Pandavas.