A combative Sonia Gandhi tore into Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday, accusing him of running a government “of some people, by one person and for a select few”, stepping up the Congress’ ante against the BJP-led government.
Gandhi’s blistering attack on Modi -- both in Parliament and at a Congress parliamentary party meeting – also saw her taking on Modi for his “blatant u-turn” on the issue of transparency, saying his government was “deliberately” keeping vacant key posts including that of the chief information commissioner.
Both Sonia Gandhi and Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi have been attacking the BJP-led government over several issues, trying to revitalise the party which was badly mauled in last year’s Lok Sabha polls.
Sonia Gandhi, who spoke in Parliament after trying to bring an adjournment motion on the issue of vacant posts, said the BJP dispensation was attempting to “subvert the RTI Act”.
“Information delayed is information denied. This is simply not acceptable. Protecting wrongdoers cannot be part of any government ethos,” she said, pointing out Modi’s promises of transparency and good governance.
She also raised the issues of the Lokpal’s post remaining vacant and the Whistleblower’s Bill not being notified despite getting the President’s assent in May 2014, and took a dig at the government saying it has otherwise shown “extraordinary urgency” in pushing bills.
Minister of state in the PMO Jitendra Singh said the CVC’s post was not yet filled as the Supreme Court was overseeing the matter while a search committee was close to shortlisting candidates for the CIC’s post, applications for which were publicly invited by the government in the “interest of transparency”.
However, dissatisfied Congress members walked out of the house.
Earlier at a CPP meet, the Congress president took repeated digs at the Modi dispensation over issues like centralisation of power, lack of substantial growth on the economic front and acting with “obstinate arrogance” in Parliament and criticism of previous governments on foreign soil.
“What do they deserve credit for? They deserve credit for the the most anti-farmer legislative amendments to our land acquisition bill. They deserve credit for ignoring the severe plight of farmers throughout the country in a show of callous unconcern that has never been seen before,” she said.
She also exhorted Congress leaders to “take the fight forward and expose this government on its other sins of omission and commission.”