Uttar Pradesh polls: Jaitley hits out at SP-Congress’ ‘opportunistic’ alliance  | assembly-elections$uttarpradesh-2017 | Hindustan Times
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Uttar Pradesh polls: Jaitley hits out at SP-Congress’ ‘opportunistic’ alliance 

Union finance minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday accused Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi of misleading the country with his limited knowledge of facts. The senior BJP leader was speaking at a press conference in Lucknow on Tuesday.

assembly elections Updated: Feb 14, 2017 21:58 IST
HT Correspondent
Union Finance Minister and senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley addressing a press conference at the party office in Lucknow on Tuesday.
Union Finance Minister and senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley addressing a press conference at the party office in Lucknow on Tuesday. (PTI)

Union finance minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday accused Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi of misleading the country with his limited knowledge of facts. The senior BJP leader was speaking at a press conference in Lucknow on Tuesday.

Responding to a question about Rahul Gandhi’s repeated allegations that the Modi government had waived Rs 1.10 lakh crore loan of the country’s big industrialists, he said, “All that has happened is that the interest amount is increasing on the loan that the Congress-led UPA government had doled out to the industrialists who did not repay the debt.”

The NDA government did not waive a single penny of any industrialist’s loan in the country after May 26, 2014, he added.

Jaitley also countered UP chief minister Akhilesh Yadav’s allegations of the Centre having withheld the state’s share of funds. “The allocation of funds to states is done under a set formula as per the Constitution and the Centre has no power at all to withhold any funds due to them,” he said, adding that such allegations were merely a confession of Yadav’s failures and a trick to divert people’s attention from them.

Labelling the Congress-SP alliance in the state ‘opportunistic’, he said, “Dr Ram Manohar Lohiya was the first politician to give the slogan ‘defeat Congress, save country’, in the 60s,” he reminded, adding ,“But UP has witnessed the fall of that anti-Congress socialist ideology with the SP entering into an alliance with the same Congress.”

The SP and the Congress had different ideologies but their meeting point was their belief in dynasty politics and corruption, he further added.

Addressing questions about demonetisation, the finance minister said the Modi government’s move was a part of its larger policy to clean the country’s economy as well as politics and had nothing to do with elections. Cash, he added, facilitated crime and corruption and that the note ban would rid the country of its excessive cash economy.

Jaitley also attacked the ruling Akhilesh Yadav government for poor law and order, calling the state of affairs ‘a total anarchy’. UP still had a long way to go in achieving parity of development with other states.

“Building a half-complete highway in five years and asking people to vote for that is ridiculous,” he said, referring to the SP’s much vaunted Agra-Lucknow expressway.

Jaitley said it was the BSP that was in fight with the BJP on several seats in the first phase but the situation, he added, might change in next phases.

Stressing the need for a stable and clean government in UP, he said people should vote the BJP to power rejecting the “tried, tested and failed.” He said a pro-BJP wave prevailing for long in the country was clearly evident in UP as well with the recent MLC results indicating that trend only. He claimed the BJP would get a comfortable majority in UP.