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HindustanTimes Wed,20 Aug 2014

70% of Punjab youths on drugs: Rahul Gandhi

Jyotsna Jalali, Hindustan Times  Chandigarh, October 12, 2012
First Published: 00:03 IST(12/10/2012) | Last Updated: 03:07 IST(12/10/2012)

“Out of every 10 youths in Punjab seven are into drugs,” Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi told a gathering of students on the Panjab University campus here on Thursday, blaming the SAD-BJP government for the tragic situation facing unemployed youths in the state.

Winding up his two-day tour of Punjab, Rahul spoke on a variety of issues of national importance amid hooting as well as cheers from students at a function organised by the National Students Union of India (NSUI).

“India is the Saudi Arabia of the 21st century and the youth are responsible for this,” he said, referring to India’s vast human resource that is comparable to the Gulf country’s oil wealth.

Strongly defending the UPA government’s decision to bring foreign direct investment (FDI) into multi-brand retail in the country, the Congress leader said regardless of what the opposition does to oppose it, the Centre would not take any step backwards on the issue.

“The Opposition can try as hard as they want to but we are not going to stop and FDI will happen,” he said, adding, “FDI is for the benefit of the farmers. We want FDI to happen so that a farmer gets his full due for his crops. It is the youth who can assert themselves and allow FDI into India”.

Taking a dig at the SAD-BJP government, Rahul said all the money sent by the Centre to Punjab for scholarships was returned without being utilised.

Before leaving, Rahul shook hands with a few youths and welcomed four students from the university who had decided to join the NSUI.

He encouraged women students to join politics and said that he would like to see a woman becoming chief minister of Punjab some day.

The Congress general secretary interacted with students for 10 minutes and left many a trifle disappointed for not spending more time talking to them.


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