Rahul Gandhi and Hardik Patel interact with each other during a political rally at Asarana village on Monday. Agence France-Presse
Addressing an election rally in Kerala’s Kollam, Congress president Rahul Gandhi said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has failed to fulfill the promises made during the last five years.
“The promises Modi has given to you, he has not fulfilled but Anil Ambani gets Rs300 billion in Rafale deal. The Prime Minister is speaking of nationalism and he gave the biggest defence deal to a person who has not made a single aircraft,” Rahul said.
The Congress president was addressing an election rally at the St Stephen college grounds in Kollam district.
“In the last five years, our Prime Minister promised several things. Two crore job opportunities.. Rs 15 lakh deposits in bank accounts and price support for farmers,” Rahul reminded the audience. Rahul asked the people how many of them had received the money in their bank account promised by the Prime Minister.
There is an ideological fight going on between the BJP and Congress, Rahul said. Prime minister Narendra Modi has said ‘Congress mukt Bharat’, meaning we’ll erase idea of Congress from India.
“But Congress will fight you to convince you, you’re wrong. We’ll beat you in election but we won’t use violence against you,” Rahul said.
His party would only use non-violent means to reject allegations raised by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “No matter how many times you (BJP/RSS) attack us, we will use love and non violence to convince you are ‘wrong’, “ Rahul said. He assured the cashew farmers in the state that his party, if voted to power, will to take up their cause. “We will start a conversation to help make cashew growing a viable alternative,” he said.
Rahul Gandhi arrived last night on a two day visit to Kerala. Besides Kollam, he would address rallies in three more districts.
The leaders of the United Democratic Front (UDF) from Kannur, Kozhikode and Kasargod are scheduled to meet Rahul on April 17 at a meeting to be held at the Sadhu Auditorium in Kannur at 7.30am.
The Congress chief will then proceed to Wayanad where he is candidate for the April 23 parliamentary elections. He will speak at Bathery and Thiruvambady in the morning, Wandoor in the afternoon and Chalissery in Palakkad at 3pm.
The Chalissery event is a joint campaign programme for the candidates of Palakkad, Ponnani and Alathur Lok Sabha constituencies.
AICC president said that he is contesting the polls from Kerala in order to give a message of unity to the entire nation. He was addressing the voters at a poll campaign for UDF candidate in Kollam, NK Premachandran, at Pathanapuram on Tuesday.
Rahul praised Kerala, being the state of highest literacy rate, is a place where brotherhood and tolerance exists and is a model for the country. His candidature from a south Indian state sends out the message that all parts of India are equal.
Rahul Gandhi arrived at Trivandrum on Monday night. He reached Kollam in a chopper on Tuesday morning.
He said that if the Congress comes to power, the party will allow anyone to start a business which will provide employment without any license for three years.
“Once the business becomes successful and after a period of three years, only then will we insist for papers. We also promise the farmers in the country that there would be a special budget for them, while also regular interactions will take place.
“Modi did nothing for the cashew industry here but we assure you that it will be taken care of by us.”
He reiterated that his reason for contesting from Wayanad was to send out a message that India is one, while also praising Kerala for the huge progress it has made on all fronts including tolerance.
“My message is to point out that India should not be viewed from just one perspective which the BJP/RSS are trying to drive into. They only want their view to be accepted by all.
“But we believe that India is a place of million ideas and perspectives and we will listen to all of them,” said Gandhi.
At his second stop in Pathanamthitta, he told the people to consider him as a brother to represent Kerala.
“I say this with utmost humility and I say this not just to Congressmen in Kerala, but to the entire people who represent all other political parties. I consider it as a huge honour to represent Kerala. I want to spend time with you to learn from you on your culture, history and tradition.”
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