Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi on Monday slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi for failing to contain the prices of essential commodities including pulses and growing intolerance leading to communal tension.
Addressing election rallies at Valmikinagar in West Champaran, Areraj in East Champaran and Riga in Sitamarhi ahead of the crucial third phase, Gandhi panned the BJP-led NDA at the centre for doing little to curb prices of essential commodities, which happened to be one of its major electoral promises. “Congress-led government was attacked when dal was selling at Rs 70 per kg. But now Modi is conveniently quiet when it’s being sold at Rs 200,” he said.
“There was a time during the Congress regime when people used to recite ‘dal roti khao, hari ke gun gao’. But RSS activists and Modiji now say ‘dal-roti mat khao, prabhu ke gun gao. Now I realise what Modi’s call ‘na khaunga, aur na khane dunga’ was actually meant for,” Gandhi said, asking the people if they had received money in their ‘jan-dhan’ accounts as promised by Modi.
Vowing to uproot BJP from other states after the Grand Alliance’s victory in Bihar, Gandhi asked Modi to “stop telling lies” and debunked his diatribe against JDU and RJD on migration of jobless youths from the state.
“Modiji comes and makes big speeches. Ask him why Biharis are being attacked in the BJP-ruled Maharasthra and what they should do on being chased away from there,” Gandhi said.
Referring to Modi’s RSS background, he added: “I know RSS has given you this training (in telling lies). But you are the PM. Start working for the country and stop lying.”
Criticising Modi’s ‘Make in India’ drive for failing to create a single job, the Congress vice president also cornered the NDA for its apathy towards burgeoning atrocities on Dalits and minorities while alluding to Union minister VK Singh’s comparison of the deaths of two Dalit children in Haryana to stoning of dogs.
“This speaks a lot about their mindset towards the deprived sections,” he said, claiming the Haryana and Dadri beef lynching incidents were handiwork of BJP leaders. “Backed by RSS, the BJP is trying to engineer riots to divide the society.”
Taking on the PM for his frequent foreign trips, Gandhi wondered how Modi could solve the issues plaguing the nation when he spends his time flying from one country to another. “Modiji is seen mostly in the company of industrialists and bureaucrats. But he does not find time to share with the poor countrymen.”
Reacting to the BJP barb on the Congress for doing nothing to the nation since Independence, Gandhi clarified that no nation can be changed within a couple of years. “Whatever we have today is the outcome of 60 years of Congress rule while the 17-month Modi regine delivered nothing to the country.”
Gandhi assured the people that the Grand Alliance government would put Bihar on the fast track of development. “Bihar made considerable progress on all fronts under Nitish Kumar’s leadership. He will continue to deliver as the chief minister in the company of RJD and Congress.”
The Congress vice president said the Grand Alliance government would strive to provide land to the landless people, create universities at the district level, provide water to every farm and connect every house with power in its next stint in Bihar.
The Congress has fielded Irshad Hussain, Brajesh Pandey and Amit Kumar Tunna from Valmikinagar, Govindganj and Riga constituencies.