Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi Tuesday attacked both Bihar CM Nitish Kumar and BJP PM candidate Narendra Modi in an apparent bid to woo both Hindu and Muslim voters in one of the few constituencies where the Congress stands a good chance in Bihar. While he attacked Kumar for not opposing Modi after the Gujarat riots, Rahul slammed Modi’s “idea of concentrating power in himself”.
“Why did Nitish keep quiet on the 2002 Gujarat riots when he was part of the NDA? Now he is suddenly talking about ideological differences,” said Rahul. He said if the UPA came to power again, it would complete the biggest industrial corridor, which would also cross Aurangabad. “It would give jobs to a lot of people. This is how how we are planning to give jobs to 10 crore people in coming five years,” he said.
Addressing the crowd at Aurangabad, where the Congress has fielded former Kerala governor Nikhil Kumar, Rahul sought to connect with the audience by interacting with them frequently. He mentioned the youth, poor and women repeatedly. He also said if the UPA comes to power, it would give people the right to medical services and right to a roof.
“He (Modi) talks of Gujarat model. That may be applicable for Gujarat. In Bihar, there will be a Bihar model. Bihar people are being ill-treated by Shiv Sena, which is an alliance partner of the NDA. The Akali Dal is also an NDA partner but Sikhs are ill-treated in Gujarat.” He also said the “balloon” of the Gujarat model would soon burst, just like the BJP’s India Shining balloon burst in 2004.
He alleged that the NDA does not believe in talking about the poor and only wants to “come to the government and make money”.
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“We fight for the poor but BJP talks about select people. They say that only making someone PM would take care of everyone,” said Rahul, announcing 2,000 women police stations, women banks and 33 per cent reservation to women in Assemblies and Parliament if the UPA comes to power. This was Rahul’s first rally in Bihar.