Rahul Gandhi questions BJP's seriousness on women's issues
“BJP should first respect women and then make the promises of empowering them,” said Rahul Gandhi at the public rally conducted in the city yesterday. The Congress vice-president slammed BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi for the snooping controversy in Gujarat (see box). It was the last day of political campaigning in the city, ahead of voting on April 17.
Congress pitched Gandhi to Punekars on the last day of campaigning in a bid to turn the minds of the voters. He also didn’t leave an opportunity to criticise the BJP and its PM candidate. “I saw a poster of BJP in Delhi in which the party was making tall promises to empower women. However, it was the same party that didn’t allow the women’s reservation bill to pass in Parliament,” Gandhi said.
Gandhi claimed that in Chhattisgarh, where BJP has been in power since 2003, the women were not safe. “20,000 women have disappeared from Chhattisgarh, while in Gujarat, the chief minister and BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Modi indulged in tapping phone calls of a woman,” he said.
About the BJP manifesto released recently by senior leaders in Delhi, Gandhi said that BJP copied it from the Congress manifesto. “They were so busy copying our manifesto that they didn’t even understand that many points like one-rank one-pension, which they mentioned in their manifesto, was already granted by us,” Rahul said.
He said he was very sure that BJP’s hope of coming to power at the Centre would be dashed soon after the results are declared. “In 2004, the slogan of India Shining didn’t work for them, as BJP leaders ignored the poor, the labourers and farmers. History would repeat and their bubble will burst after May 16,” he said.
He promised Punekars to create more manufacturing units in the city, which would give them employment. “I want to see a tag of ‘made in Pune’ on the commodities instead of ‘made in China’.
According to reports, Gujarat minister of state for home Amit Shah was accused of misusing his powers and police machinery for illegal surveillance of a young woman in August 2009 “at the behest of his sahib”.