Jaitley hits out at Rahul over 'suit boot' barb, questions his leave
Finance minister Arun Jaitley termed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led central government a “soojh boojh ki sarkar (wise government)”, as he hit back at Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi for his attacks on Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his foreign travels.india Updated: May 01, 2015 07:42 IST
Finance minister Arun Jaitley termed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led central government a “soojh boojh ki sarkar (wise government)”, as he hit back at Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi for his attacks on Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his foreign travels.
Taking a dig at Gandhi's much-talked-about sabbatical, Jaitley said there was a “difference between national duty and disappearance for a jaunt”.
On his return from a 53-day leave, Gandhi has consistently attacked Modi and his government, which he termed a “suit boot ki sarkar and achche din (good days) sarkar”.
He has also criticised Modi over his foreign travels by asking him to acquaint himself with the “misery of farmers while being on a short tour of India”.
In a retort to Gandhi’s “suit boot ki sarkar ( read corporate-friendly government)” taunts, Jaitley said, “This is a soojh-boojh ki sarkar. Let there be no illusions about it. It is good to be suited but dangerous to be booted out”.
The reference was clearly to the Congress’ worst-ever performance in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, in which it managed to bag just 44 of the 543 seats.
Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge sought to counter Gandhi. “You have the government, the intelligence set up. You would now… Wherever he goes, he does not publicise.”
The finance minister also attacked the Congress for “politicising” the farmers' issue on the day Gandhi undertook a 15km “padyatra (foot march)” in Maharashtra’s Vidarbha region to meet families of those who had committed suicide after their crops failed.
“It has become a tradition now. We should all be concerned about farmers. But nobody should be allowed to use farmers as a political instrument,” Jaitley said, asking the entire Opposition to shun its “politics of obstructionism” in the passage of key reform measures such as land acquisition bill to allow growth.
Responding to Congress member KV Thomas' remarks that the Prime Minister made 16 foreign trips during the past 11 months, Jaitley said India's stature in the comity of nations has increased and that it undertook four operations to evacuate people from war-torn countries.
“India is now a leader even in an area like disaster management. This is no mean achievement,” he said, referring to evacuation undertaken by India of nationals of 48 countries besides its own nationals from war-torn Yemen as also the rescue and relief help given to quake-ravaged Nepal.
Referring to a Congress charge that Modi is all-powerful and ministers have no powers, Jaitley said, “Yesterday your leader (Gandhi) found PM is outside the country, today you say he is hands-on PM and does not let other ministers work...make up your mind”.
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