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HindustanTimes Thu,18 Sep 2014

Onscreen ‘bahu’ plays real-time ‘family’ drama in Amethi

Umesh Raghuvanshi, Hindustan Times  Amethi, April 20, 2014
First Published: 21:46 IST(20/4/2014) | Last Updated: 10:12 IST(21/4/2014)

Actor-turned-politician Smriti Irani of Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhu Bahu Thi fame on Sunday used her story-telling techniques to launch a stinging attack on Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul Gandhi.
 
A day after Sonia's emotional speech that "I gave my son to Amethi in 2004", the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate from the traditional Congress stronghold used gripping narratives to tell the people of the constituency that Rahul had failed to do enough.
 
The former actor addressed 14 meetings at different locations across Amethi, laying stress on numerous satirical stories to present her case and connect with the people. 
 
"Bete ke char kartavaya hote hain (a son has four duties)… A son should be able to run the kitchen of his family… he should be an old age support for the elderly… he should be helpful to the youngsters and able to bring honour to the family," she said.
 
Irani referred to reports about 'rotten' foodgrains in the godown, problems in getting old age pension, unemployment and the visit of British foreign secretary David Miliband to Amethi in 2009. She added Rahul had invited Miliband to exhibit poverty before him.
 
Irani had a story ready about day-to-day problems here and the promises the Congress leaders had failed to keep.
 
"This morning, I saw a man sitting on a LPG cylinder near Jamo. I asked him not to sit on the cylinder as it may explode. The man told me the cylinder was empty... the LPG comes after one and a half year here. Kerosene too is in short supply," she said, while the audience laughed and cheered.
 
Taking a veiled dig at local MP Rahul over irregular power supply, she added, "I saw a man desperately searching for something this morning. When I asked him, he said he was looking for the Election Commission's office. He wanted to request the EC to hold the elections regularly hoping this would ensure non-stop power supply in the constituency."
 
She also told a story criticising the delay in connecting Salon and Amethi with a railway line. Rahul had recently laid the foundation stone of this project.
 
"I saw a youth in a field near Salon this morning. The youth informed me he was waiting for a train from Amethi. His brother was also waiting for a train from Salon.
 
"They told me that Rahul Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi both had promised the train connecting Salon and Amethi. Then I saw an elderly person who said both the youth were his nephews. The elderly man told me even Jawaharlal Nehru had made the promise."


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