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HindustanTimes Mon,01 Sep 2014

Congress meet fails to address real issues: BJP

IANS  New Delhi, January 18, 2013
First Published: 21:09 IST(18/1/2013) | Last Updated: 21:10 IST(18/1/2013)

As the Congress began its brainstorming session in Jaipur Friday, the BJP said the ruling party has failed to address real issues and its leaders were not confident of returning to power after the 2014 general elections.

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"Introspection is good for any party but (Congress president) Sonia Gandhi's speech gives an indication that the Congress is missing the opportunity of an honest review. She has failed to admit that the government lacks integrity," BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman said.

"For a moment I felt it was a 'Chinta Shivir' (worry meet) rather than 'Chintan Shivir' (brainstorming meet)," Sitharaman said.

Sitharaman said the Congress president failed to address important issues such as price rise and corruption, about which people were concerned.

The party was merely doing lip service, she said.

"Reducing price rise was on their (Congress') 100-days agenda. What happened? They reward the corrupt. They are talking about women empowerment. But the husband of a Congress MLA in Rajasthan, accused in a rape case, is absconding," she said.

Jaleesh Khan, the husband of Congress legislator Jahida Khan, who was accused of raping a woman two years ago, has been declared a absconder by a Rajasthan court.

On reports of Congress looking for new allies, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) called it a "failure" and said the party was looking for new allies since it was not confident of winning again.

"For a national party prior to an election year, to start a review saying they may not be able to come back to power on their own is very good for the opposition party," Sitharaman said.

"For a party that has claimed it has given excellent growth, being in power today and going for an election as incumbent government, to say it might be difficult, I think its more of admission of failure, rather than a realistic assessment of what coalition politics is moving towards," Sitharaman said.

Rural development minister Jairam Ramesh was quoted by a TV news channel saying the party might not be able to come back to power on its own in the next general elections.

External affairs minister Salman Khurshid told reporters: "We're here to see we get the numbers and get our government in power".

Sitharaman also said the party did not know how to handle coalition.

"Congress does not know how to treat allies. Their alliance partners are coming out in the open and complaining against their decisions," Sitharaman said.

The Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) is on a weak foot since key ally Trinamool Congress, which has 19 Lok Sabha members. It is surviving on outside support of Samajwadi Party, and Bahujan Samaj Party which have 22 and 21 Lok Sabha members respectively.

Sitharaman said there was no chance for Congress to win in 2014 Lok Sabha polls as the mood in the country was totally "anti-Congress".


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