The Leader of the Opposition in the state Assembly Shankersinh Vaghela said here on Tuesday that Gujarat had been meted out a raw deal in the allocation of portfolios by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Addressing mediapersons on the occasion of the release of a career guidance book, compiled by state Congress spokesperson Manish Doshi and published by Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee (GPCC), the veteran politician said that even if Modi decided to retain Vadodara Lok Sabha seat and vacated Varanasi, Gujarat got only one (Modi himself) and a half ministerial portfolio because Mansukh Vasava was only a minister of state. The other two – Arun Jaitley and Smriti Irani, both cabinet ministers – were only Rajya Sabha members elected from Gujarat and did not belong to the state, he said. “The injustice with Gujarat has begun from the allocation of portfolio itself,” Vaghela, once a very close friend of Modi when both were in the BJP, said. “It is in fact a government of ‘dhokha dhadi’ (fraud),” he alleged.
He further alleged that the new government at the Centre was actually the government of the corporates and not the common man. He said, “The BJP spent hundreds of crores of rupees in the general elections, but neither the BJP nor RSS had the capacity to arrange such a huge fund. The truth is that the funds for the BJP were raised by the corporate houses and the policies of the new government would be influenced by the corporate groups. The impact of corporate groups on the new government was quite visible from their presence at the swearing-in ceremony.”
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Taking a dig at Modi holding diplomatic meetings with the heads of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) countries on the next day of the swearing-in ceremony over “a cup of tea,” Vaghela said that the diplomatic parleys were really a “joke” as Modi held very brief meetings ranging from15 minutes to 30 minutes with the representatives of the SAARC countries. “You can’t discuss anything concrete in such a short time. It apparently was intended to impress the people at home and fool them. It was really a joke,” Vaghela said.