AAP leader Kumar Vishwas Sunday had a tumultuous start to his campaign in Rahul Gandhi’s constituency as protesters showed black flags and pelted stones but the rookie challenger said he won’t be frightened away while attacking the Congress vice president for “doing little” for the people.
Taking on Gandhi at a rally on his home turf, Vishwas said the “Rajkumar” had just indulged in “symbolism” by eating in houses of dalits and not raised even a single question related to people of Amethi in Parliament in past 10 years. He asked the people to vote for an “aam aadmi” (common man) instead of a prince. “You have ensured victory of Yuvraj, Maharaja and Maharani…. Now this is the time you all should elect a servant by pressing the right button.
“If they think that I will leave Amethi if they show black flags and hurl eggs and stones, They are wrong. It’s fight between ‘aam aadmi’ and ‘Rajkumar’. I am not going to leave Amethi. I may remain alive or my dead body will leave here in the next three months….We were not afraid when we raised corruption issue of son-in-law of Maharani…,” the AAP leader said reffering to Robert Vadra, son-in-law of Congress Chief Sonia Gandhi.
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The poet-turned politician was shown black flags by the protesters, who also raised slogans against him for his alleged remarks against a religious event, while he was passing through Jagdishpur area along with his supporters. They also burnt effigy of the AAP leader and said that a person, who does not respect religious sentiments, would not be accepted in Amethi.
Vishwas said he had already expressed regret if his actions had hurt sentiments of anyone inadvertently. Stones and eggs were also thrown at two buses ferrying party supporters to the rally venue, in Gandhi Chowk area of the city. Window panes of the buses got damaged due to the stone pelting and police resorted to mild force to control the mob after which the buses left for the rally venue.
Vishwas, when asked about the protests, said these were “sponsored” and he would defeat Rahul Gandhi with a “huge margin” in the Lok Sabha polls. “Why they are doing so. What have I done. Is Amethi a separate country, where I would need passport for visiting,” he said at the rally.
The AAP leader, whose party made a stunning debut in Delhi polls, said no one should underestimate the power of the common man and asked the people to end the dynastic politics. “We did not want to fight elections, but were forced to do so after being challenged by the Congress.”
Taking a dig at Rahul Gandhi for staying in dalit houses and eating with them, Vishwas said, showing such “symbolism” would not help as the job of a Member of Parliament was to worry whether dalits in the area represented by him have had their food even before eating his own. “Sleeping in dalit houses under SPG security or eating with dalits won’t help or change things. That is not the job of an MP. His job is to worry if all dalits have eaten food even before he has hiw own…This fight is not easy. I have come here to stay. I will not go back till you put your stamp on me,” he said.
Questioning Gandhi for the lack of development in Amethi, he asked people of the area if they were ready to hand over the nation into the hands of the family again. “If Rahul Gandhi won again, no one would dare to challege him in next 70 years…. I have dared to challenge him after leaving my job, mushairas,” he said. “I challenge those hurling eggs, stones and showing black flags to me to tell me where to reach…I will confront them alone if they are happy to beat me”, he said addressing the “Jan Vishwas” rally.
Meanwhile, Rahul Gandhi’s local representative Chandra Kant Dubey denied that Congressmen were involved in protests against Vishwas. “Our party workers are busy in celebrating Vivekanand Jayanti and Priyanka’s brithday… None of them were involved in protest against Vishwas”, Dubey said. Vishwas also attacked other political parties by alleging that they were all together and cited the example of Dimple Yadav’s Kannauj victory when other parties did not field anyone against her. She is the wife of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and was elected unopposed.
The AAP leader also mocked at Congressmen for only thinking about Priyanka Gandhi’s birthday and said though she is their sister, they have come to Amethi to celebrate Swami Vivekananda’s birth anniversary. “The more you hit us, our 1000 votes will increase everyday. In Delhi too, they threw black ink on Arvind Kejriwal and Sanjay Singh but later the people threw the same ink on them in elections by throwing them out of the power”, he said. Yesterday, AAP’s press conference in Lucknow was briefly disrupted by a youth, who threw an egg at Vishwas and raised slogans against him.