BJP far removed from concerns of poor: Rahul Gandhi
Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi Thursday continued his aggressive campaign against the BJP in poll-bound Madhya Pradesh, saying the ruling party in the state was far removed from the concerns of the poor
"The BJP's politics is the politics of air-conditioners and industrialists," Gandhi said, while addressing a rally in the backward Bundelkhand region of Madhya Pradesh.
This is the second leg of his campaign in the state.
Highlighting the pro-poor Food Security Act and the Land Acquisition and Rehabilitation Act, Gandhi said the BJP opposed the right to food law, asking how it would be funded.
"When it comes to giving food to the poor, the BJP opposed the food bill, saying where will the money for it come from," Gandhi said.
"The farmer and the labourer should also get the market rate for his land, like the rich," he said, adding that compensation for land has been hiked four times under the land acquisition legislation.
Targeting the BJP government in Madhya Pradesh, Gandhi said: "While the poor people of the state were having a difficult time, the ministers were happy."
"Did 'India Shining' (BJP's national campaign of 2004) bring development to you?" he asked. The Congress, he said, engages in the politics of development and empowerment of people.
Gandhi reminded people that he had come to the backward region in 2008 during a drought and spent nights with people there, getting bitten by mosquitoes and drinking village well water. He said he had taken ill, but was happy with it all.
"It was good. Leaders should know what village life is like," he said.
Claiming that the United Progressive Alliance government had built more roads in the country than were built during the tenure of the National Democratic Alliance, Gandhi said he wanted "the poor of the region and their next generation to drive cars".
Reminding people of the central financial package worth thousands of crores of rupees for the region in 2008, Gandhi said, "the centre will provide more if needed, to make Bundelkhand a prosperous region".
He told people that "there will be a Congress government of the poor and the youth in the state".
The assembly polls in Madhya Pradesh are scheduled for Nov 25.