Politics of polarisation is isolating people in India: Rahul Gandhi at Berkeley
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday said “politics of divide and polarisation” was isolating people as he criticised the Modi government over its economic policies and handling of Kashmir.
Addressing the students at University of California, Berkeley on India at 70: Reflections on the Path Forward, Gandhi accepted that the Congress had lost touch with people in the run-up to 2014 election that saw the BJP sweep the polls and his party reduced to its worst ever tally of 44 seats.
“Somewhere around 2012, a certain arrogance crept into Congress and they stopped having a conversation with people,” Gandhi, who is on a two-week tour of the United States, said.
The Congress leader, however, was unsparing in his criticism of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government.
Demonetisation and hurriedly implementation of the goods and services tax (GST) had hit growth hard, he said.
Note ban caused tremendous damage to the economy as it was taken without discussion with the chief economic adviser and Parliament.
He also criticised the government over the recent spate in lynchings, saying the politics of polarisation was very dangerous.
“Hatred, anger and violence can destroy us. Liberal journalists are being shot. People are being lynched, Dalits are being killed over suspicions of carrying beef, Muslims are killed over suspicions of eating beef, all this is new in India,” he said.
When the Congress came to power terrorism was rampant in Kashmir, “when we finished there was peace, we had broken the back of terrorism”, Gandhi said.