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LIVE BLOG

Rahul Gandhi in Kerala LIVE: Manohar Parrikar said he had nothing to do with new Rafale deal, says Congress chief

Rahul Gandhi in Kochi LIVE updates: Congress president attacks Narendra Modi over Rafale and CPI(M) and BJP in Kerala for violence.

By HT Correspondent | Jan 29, 2019 17:44 IST
highlights

Congress president Rahul Gandhi kicked off the United Democratic Front’s election campaign in Kochi today. He will address a convention of party booth presidents and vice-presidents in the evening and meet leaders of alliance partners. He is also expected to reply to some of the charges made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi who had addressed two rallies in Kerala in two weeks.

Some Lok Sabha constituencies in the state are likely face a stiff three-cornered contest this time against the background of the controversy over the entry of women into the Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala. Out of the 20 Lok Sabha seats in the state the Congress-led UDF won 12 and CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front bagged eight in the 2014 general elections.

The Congress had come under flak after Rahul Gandhi said he backed the stand of Kerala unit of the party opposing the entry of women in the 10 to 50 age group in the Sabarimala temple even though he personally held a contrary view.

Here are the live updates:

5.10 pm IST

Every single leader has unique strength: Rahul

In every party there are tensions. We allow conversations. Every single leader has unique strengths. Thank you and Jai Hind.

5.05 pm IST

I am proud that people of Kerala are guiding the people of India: Rahul

I was recently in Dubai. It made me happy that the spirit of the people of Kerala has travelled there. I was very proud that the spirit of the workers of Kerala have built it. Kerala is not just a state, it is an idea. It is a way of looking at the world. It includes compassion, humility, respect. I am proud that people of Kerala are guiding the people of India. Thank you for coming here, and dedicating yourself.

5.02 pm IST

There is no country in the world that has ever committed to minimum income guarantee

We would ensure every poor has minimum income guarantee. There is no country in the world that has ever committed to minimum income guarantee.

5 pm IST

We are going to defeat the CPI(M) in Kerala and Narendra Modi in the country: Rahul

They believe that they have all the answers. You are humble. You, Congress workers, are convinced that Indian people have all the answers. You listen to the people and work for them. We are going to defeat the CPI(M) in Kerala and Narendra Modi in the country.

4.58 pm IST

Only Congress can unite all the people: Rahul

Only Congress can unite all the people. You can see what happened in the three states Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. We are going to do the same thing in Kerala. And the people of the country will help in doing this. Everybody says RSS, CPI(M) has cadre, but you have the heart of the country. You don’t forget how the RSS leaders were begging with the British when the Congress fought for freedom and went to jails, died in Jallianwala Bagh, Kerala, Punjab and Jammu Kashmir. Yes they have the cadre, but you have the heart of India.

4.55 pm IST

We cannot achieve anything if we are divided: Rahul

Kerala and India will grow only if we are united. We cannot achieve anything if we are divided. Modi says India is ahead of China but everywhere you see items made in China. And remember, each time you see this, Chinese youths are benefitting. I am confident if we work together one day, Chinese youngsters will take selfies with Indian phones.

4.50 pm IST

Congress doesn’t agree with violence brought by CPI(M) and BJP: Rahul

Everyone stood together in a traumatic time. It was expected that your government will reach out to the people of the state and come to help, but instead this govt did not do anything. It didn’t give the people of Kerala the support and vision it needed. Instead, the CPIM and BJP divided the people. The real issue of jobs for youngsters, protection for farmers, women, the welfare of Kerala was put on the backburner. Congress respects rights of women and respects the tradition of the system. But the Congress doesn’t agree with the violence brought by the CPIM and BJP. I want to ask the CPI(M), what have you done for the people, farmers, youths in Kerala? I want to ask the same thing that I ask Narendra Modi.

4.48 pm IST

In 2019, we will restructure the Gabbar Singh Tax (GST): Rahul

He has destroyed the economic background of the country built by the people and the Congress. Modi gave a GST which was fundamentally flawed. What sort of GST is this that nobody understands it? And it is practically impossible to implement it. In 2019, we will restructure the Gabbar Singh Tax (GST)

4.46 pm IST

Central govt demonetised India’s economy: Rahul

The Centre demonetised India’s economy and destroyed the entire informal sector, wiped out small and medium industries destroyed shopkeepers. PM Modi comes to Kerala and says India is ahead of China. On which basis? 

4.45 pm IST

Manhoar Parrikar said that he had nothing to do with new Rafale deal: Rahul Gandhi

The ex-defence minister Manoar Parrikar clearly said that he had nothing to do with the new (Rafale) deal orchestrated by Mr Narendra Modi to benefit Anil Ambani. And the result of this is that thousands and thousands of young Indians who could have got high paying technical jobs in HAL, today will get no jobs. No defence capability is going to be built here.

4.42 pm IST

Why was the CBI chief removed at 1.30 at night? asks Rahul

Why was the CBI chief removed at 1.30 at night? When the Supreme Court reinstated CBI chief, why did the Narendra Modi govt remove him again? Why did the ex-President of France tell the press that he was told by the Indian PM to give the Rafale contract to Anil Ambani? Why was a man with no experience given the deal when there were people who have building planes for 70 years? Why was the price of one plane raised from 526 cr to 1600 cr? There is only one answer — that the Prime Minister of India is corrupt. To protect himself, he removed the CBI chief.

4.40 pm IST

4 judges spoke about judge Loya: Rahul

Over the last 5 yrs, every single Indian institution has been attacked. Last year, 4 judges says they are not allowed to work. In the same breath, they take the name of judge Loya. What is the message they were trying to give our country? They were saying that Modi and Amit Shah are not allowing them to work.

4.37 pm IST

We will give every poor direct money in his bank account: Rahul

What is minimum income guarantee? Like the MNREGA, food security act, etc., the Congress party govt will guarantee minimum income guarantee for every poor. We will give every poor direct money in his bank account. With this, we will ensure two Indias, but one India.

4.35 pm IST

Modi promised maximum income guarantee to 15 of friends: Rahul

Modi has spent 5 years wasting India’s time, telling one lie after the lie. He promised 2 crore jobs every year to youngsters. But he has given maximum income guarantee to 15 of his friends. Job seeking people in Kerala and Karnataka and HAL were pushed aside and Anil Ambani was given the contract in 2 minutes. For five years, people have watched this tamasha. Nirav Modi Rs 35000 crore, Mehul Choksi Rs 30000 crore, Vijay Mallya Rs 10000 crore, Anil Ambani Rs 30000 crore. If Modi can give maximum income guarantee for 15 friends, then we will give minimum income guarantee for every Indian.

4.34 pm IST

We believe in transformational politics: Rahul

Congress has done transformational things for the country. We believe in transformational politics not incremental politics. When the nation faced a wall of starvation, Congress broke that with Green revolution. Within a decade we got food security. We also brought White revolution and made India biggest producer of milk in the world.

4.32 pm IST

‘Narendra Modi is absolutely intent on dividing India’

Narendra Modi is absolutely intent on dividing India. He wants to create two Indias — one for richest people and the other for farmers, labourers and workers. He is ready to forgive 3.5 lakh crore for 15 of his friends. But he is not ready to spend one rupee for farmers. He dilutes MNREGA and the Land Acquisition Act, which gave farmers rights to land.

4.30 pm IST

We will ensure more spending in healthcare and education

We will ensure India builds a low cost high quality education system. We will ensure more spending in healthcare and education. We don’t want India which is only for rich people.

4.28 pm IST

We want to see women in positions of leadership: Rahul Gandhi

Need more women, youth in representation. I assure that we will do this. In every election, we will have more women and youths as representatives. We want to see women in positions of leadership

4.25 pm IST

Every Congressman must have the feeling of ‘Ente booth, ente party’

Congress party belongs to every single member who fights for the party. Every Congressman must have the feeling of ‘Ente booth, ente party’, says Rahul Gandhi.

4:00 pm IST

Rahul Gandhi to address a public gathering in Kerala soon