New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday made a veiled attack on the Congress saying that people can abuse him if they want but they should not belittle personalities like Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. Also Read - Statue of Unity Finds Place in '8 Wonders of SCO', EAM Jaishankar Says 'Surely an Inspiration'

PM Modi’s remarks came while addressing a public gathering in Gujarat’s Rajkot after inaugurating the Mahatma Gandhi Museum at Alfred High School, where the Father of the Nation had studied. Also Read - ‘Work Together For The Nation, Solve One Problem at a Time,’ PM Modi Tells IAS Officers



“There is so much to learn from Mahatma Gandhi. Gujarat is blessed that this is the land that is so closely associated with Bapu. On 2nd October 1869, not only was a person born but also an era began,” he said. Also Read - 'BJP Paying Homage to Sardar Patel Makes Me Happy,' Says Congress Leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra

The prime minister said that the deserving candidate for United Nations’ ‘Champion of the Earth’ award is Mahatma Gandhi. Earlier this week, the Union Nations had bestowed PM Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron with the 2018 ‘Champions of the Earth’ award for their leadership on promotion of solar energy.



In another veiled attack on the Grand Old Party, PM Modi said that the sanitation coverage in country before 2014 was 35 per cent which increased to 95 per cent in four years of his government’s rule.

“It’s been over seventy years since Independence but Bapu’s dream of a Swachh Bharat remains unfulfilled. Together, we have to fulfil this dream. In the last four years we have covered significant ground in Swachh Bharat Mission but we must continue to do more,” he said.

Earlier in the day, PM Modi inaugurated a number of modern food processing facilities worth Rs 1100 crore, including Amul’s ultra-modern chocolate plant and Anand Agricultural Univesity’s incubation centre-cum-centre of excellence in food processing. He also inaugurated a solar cooperative society at Mujhkuva village and laid the foundation stone for the expansion of Amul manufacturing facilities at Anand and Khatraj.

Earlier today, addressing the nation in his monthly radio programme ‘Mann Ki Baat’, PM Modi had lauded Mahatma Gandhi’s contribution towards the freedom and betterment of the nation.

Saying that October 2 will be a special day this year, PM Modi said that the government will organise several across events across the country as well as abroad for the next two years to mark Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary.

“Gandhi Ji was a Lok Sangrahak who endeared himself to people across all sections of society. The Gandhi charter that continues to inspire us all,” he said.

The prime minister said that Mahatma Gandhi has inspired the entire world with his ideology, including people like Dr Martin Luther King Jr and Nelson Mandela.

“Bapu gave an inspirational mantra to all of us which is known as Gandhi Ji’s Talisman. This Mantra is extremely relevant today,” he added.