The Congress Sunday went into election overdrive in Madhya Pradesh with a show of unity at the home turf of the Scindias here where the royal family scion identified violence against women and corruption as the most important poll planks in the state.
It is a matter of shame that the BJP government has brought MP to the list of states with the most number of rapes in the country. Im told 14 per cent of all rapes in the country happen in this state, Union MoS Power,Jyotiraditya Scindia,said.
Although accompanied by Congress bigwigs from Delhi and the state like Kamal Nath,Digvijaya Singh,Satyavrat Chaturvedi,Ajay Singh,Kantilal Bhuria on the dais,it was clearly a Scindias show.
Addressing his home crowd of more than 50,000 in Morenas Ambedkar stadium,the rally saw Scindia meeting people from his open-top jeep,tearing into the BJP and calling the Chief Minister liar and state ministers thieves.
Speaking about the Congresss policies and the BJPs lack of it,Scindia highlighted the various steps taken by the UPA government in the past nine years which the Congress hopes would be vote-magnets in the state as well as in the general election.
We have given the country MGNREGA,the food security Bill,the forest rights Act and even the right to education. Sadly,all these laws and schemes are misused by the BJP government which is only interested in making money for itself, he said.
Embattled in MP,where the BJP juggernaut is seeking a third term,the Scindia bastion happens to be one of the few places in the state where the Congress has done well. The Congress,with merely 66 MLAs against the BJPs 152 in the current Assembly,had lost the byelections everywhere except in the Gwalior-Chambal region with Morena as its political heart.
Of the 34 Assembly seats in the region,the Congress holds 12.
During my time as chief minister we happened to be in power for 10 years when it was the NDA government at the Centre,which did not give any money to us. In contrast,the 10 years of the BJP here has seen plenty of money coming in through central schemes, Digvijaya Singh said.
Despite that,the BJP has failed to solve the farmers problems,rising crime and lack of power, he added.
Nath decried the lack of cooperation from the state government to the Centre in bringing industry to MP. It is clear from the massive numbers today that people in MP want change, he said.
Even as local Congressmen said Scindia was the only charismatic Congress leader left in the state,they stayed short of officially projecting him as the mascot for the elections due in November.
The state is ready to be led by someone who is young and clean and knows MP, said Chaturvedi.
Believed to be divided into several camps led by Digvijaya Singh,Suresh Pachauri,PCC president Bhuria,Leader of Opposition Ajay Singh and even Scindia himself,the lack of unity in the state outfit has been identified as one of chief reasons behind the partys debacle in successive elections.