Development Issues To Dominate Polls: Advani

New Delhi, Feb 22: | Updated: Feb 23 2004, 05:30am hrs
Hinting that the campaign for the forthcoming Lok Sabha polls will be dominated by developmental issues rather than political ones, deputy prime minister LK Advani has said the recent Assembly elections in five states were fought on providing basic amenities to the people.

In most elections (in the past) debate used to be on political issues. It is only recently that we have consciously tried to make development an issue of debate, Advani told a meeting here on Sunday.

The deputy prime minister, delivering the valedictory address at the world congress on natural disaster mitigation, said he is amazed when a reporter said the principles on which the recent Assembly polls were fought was BSP.

When asked to substantiate, the reporter said it was Bijli, Sadak and Pani (electricity, road and water), Advani said.

On natural disasters in the country, Advani said though substantial scientific and material progress has been made, the loss of lives and property due to such mishaps have not come down and have in fact gone up.

He said over the past couple of years, the government has brought about a visible shift in its approach to disaster management. The new approach emanates from the conviction that development cannot be sustainable unless disaster mitigation strategies are built into the development process, Advani said.