Accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of being unwilling to even recognise that there is an unemployment problem in the country, Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Saturday said that Modi talks to youths but does not listen to them.
Addressing a crowd of university students at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Rahul said that India is a country of over 1.2 billion people and is “creating about 450 jobs per 24 hours”. In comparison, he said, China is creating “50,000 jobs in the same 24 hours”. Rahul said these numbers are not his figures, but those of the Finance Ministry, presented in Lok Sabha.
But even after this, Rahul said, “our Prime Minister doesn’t seem to think this is a problem.” The Congress president said it is important to address the issue, and “we need to first acknowledge that there is a problem, and then we need to galvanise support to fight it”.
One of the main problems in India is that it is not able to give jobs to the young people, Rahul said. “You are seeing anger” because of this problem, “which is rising and the right-wing is utilising that anger”, he said. The only solution is that India starts to understand that it has a jobs crisis and works towards resolving that crisis, he said.
Rahul maintained that Modi does not want to debate with him, even though he has challenged the Prime Minister to talk on topics, including the alleged impropriety in the Rafale deal, unemployment, and corruption.
Rahul asked if Modi has “come and interacted with you” in a similar way and taken “questions from you” the way he is interacting with the youths.
He said Modi should interact with students to hear them out on issues such as jobs, and that “he needs your support to address this issue”. Modi, he said, “should not be telling his views to the youths, but listen to their voices”.
Rahul said, “People from a certain organisation and ideology are being appointed in universities and colleges one after the other and they do not care for the global vision and feelings of students. They only think about their ideology and want to make the Indian education system their weapon)”. This, he told the students, “is frankly an insult to you”.
In the wake of the Pulwama attack, Rahul said if the Congress comes to power it will ensure that members of the paramilitary forces who are killed on duty get the status of a “martyr”.