Party president Sonia Gandhi delivered opening remarks at the CWC meet. (ANI File Photo)
Party president Sonia Gandhi delivered opening remarks at the CWC meet. (ANI File Photo)

From farm laws to economy: What Sonia Gandhi said at CWC meet

The party could also hold the internal polls in February, party functionaries said.
By HT Correspondent, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 01:33 PM IST

Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Friday criticised the Centre over the ongoing protests by the farmers over the three agricultural laws and the way it has been handling the coronavirus pandemic as well as the state of the country's economy. Gandhi made the remarks during her opening speech at the ongoing Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting. “The agitation of farmers continues and the government has shown shocking insensitivity and arrogance going through the charade of consultations,” she told her party's leaders.

The party also discussed the possibility of internal polls in the coming months. It may consider a proposal to hold organisational elections between May 15 and May 30, which could see the election of a new president, party functionaries said on Friday. The Congress could also hold the internal polls in February, they added.

Here’s what Sonia Gandhi said at the CWC meet:

1. She alleged that Parliament was consciously denied an opportunity for examining any meaningful details, implications and impacts of the new agricultural laws. Reiterating the party’s stand on the legislation, Gandhi said, “We reject them categorically because they will destroy the foundations of food security that are based on the three pillars of MSP, public procurement and PDS.”

2. Speaking about the nationwide Covid-19 vaccination drive, Gandhi said she hoped that the process would be completed to the fullest extent. She, however, slammed the BJP government for its handling of the pandemic, saying, “The government has inflicted untold suffering on the people of our country by the manner in which it has managed the Covid-19 pandemic.It will take years for the scars to heal."

3. The Congress president also addressed the state of the country’s economy, which she said remained grim, adding “large parts of the economy like MSME and the informal sector have been decimated with the government refusing to extend a lifeline.”

4. Alleging that panic privatisation has gripped the government, Gandhi accused it of weakening the labour and environmental laws and called out its “selling off of carefully built-up public assets.”

5. In a veiled attack at the government over the Central Vista project, the Congress leader said, “When public expenditure has to be carefully prioritised, it is very painful to find huge amounts of money being allocated and spent on initiatives that can only be described as ‘personal vanity projects.”

6. Hinting at leaked chats of journalist Arnab Goswami, Gandhi said, “Very recently there have been very disturbing reports on how national security has been so thoroughly compromised,” adding that a few days back senior party leader AK Antony had said that leaking of official secrets of military operations is treason. “Yet the silence from the government’s side on what has been revealed has been deafening. Those who give certificates of patriotism and nationalism to others now stand totally exposed,” she said without naming anyone.

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