Prime Minister Narendra Modi on May 17 addressed a public meeting at Barabanki, Uttar Pradesh, ahead of the Lok Sabha constituency going to the polls in the fifth phase on May 20. In the speech, Prime Minister Modi presented a consolidated version of several of the controversial claims he had made in his earlier campaign speeches.

In the Barabanki speech, the Prime Minister, in violation of the Model Code of Conduct, openly talked about the Ayodhya Ram Temple and portrayed the Opposition parties (Samajwadi Party and Congress) as anti-Hindu. This has been a recurrent motif in campaign speeches by the Prime Minister and other BJP leaders. PM Modi also claimed that if elected to power, Congress would overturn the Supreme Court verdict on Ram Mandir. This is a claim he had earlier made in Dhar, Madhya Pradesh. Further, the PM repeated the claim that reservations of the SC/ST/OBCs would all be given to the Muslim community and so would be the wealth of the non-Muslims. Alt News has previously fact-checked these misleading and false claims made by the PM and BJP leaders. He also used the phrase ‘vote jihad’ and possibly for the first time in his recent election speeches, praised UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath’s administering of bulldozer justice.

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