Congress chief Rahul Gandhi on Saturday stepped up his attack on the Narendra Modi-led BJP government, saying that while the BJP waived loans worth Rs. 3.5 lakh crore of industrialists Anil Ambani and Vijay Mallya, it promised a meagre Rs. 3.50 per day to farmers during the interim budget. Gandhi was speaking at a convention of tribals at Dhuragaon village in Bastar district of Chhattisgarh.
“Lakhs and crores of rupees have been given to the people like Anil Ambani, Nirav Modi, Mehul Choksi, Vijay Mallya and Lalit Modi, but farmers will get just Rs 3.50 per day,” Gandhi said, referring to the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Scheme. The scheme aims to provide direct cash support of Rs 6,000 annually to farmers cultivating up to two hectares (five acres).
Thereafter, Gandhi promised minimum income guarantee to the poor if voted to power and the money would be deposited directly into their bank accounts. The Congress president also took potshots at the Modi government over employment and demonetisation.
“The poll promises (made by Modi) regarding transfer of Rs 15 lakh into everyone’s bank account and providing two crore jobs have not been implemented. “The decision of demonetisation made you stand in queues (outside banks). Have you seen Anil Ambani, Mehul Choksi, Nirav Modi and Vijay Mallya in queues? If it was a fight against black money then why all the honest people had to stand in queues,” said Gandhi.
Terming the GST as the ‘Gabbar Singh tax’, Gandhi vouched to convert the tax into a “sachha (true) GST”, referring to the Goods and Services Tax.
“There will be a single tax and no five taxes. Those who snatched your money, they will not be able to put pressure on you and you will be able to work honestly. It will be a simple tax and not the Gabbar Singh Tax,” he added.
Recalling party’s achievement on fulfilling promises, Gandhi said that farmers in Chhattisgarh were now receiving Rs 4,000 per sack of tendu leaves and is providing minimum support price of Rs 2,500 for paddy.
He also launched broadsides at former Chattisgarh CM Raman Singh. “BJP, RSS and Raman Singh have no dearth of money. They have snatched your money and either filled their pockets or gave it to their selected 15 businessmen-friends,” he alleged.
Calling his party as the state’s “sipahis” (soldiers), Gandhi said his doors are open to the people. “You are the owners of the land, water, jungle. Those sitting on the dais here are your ‘sipahis’ (soldiers) and I am there in Lok Sabha. My doors are open to you and you can approach me. I will be honest with you and tell you if the work can be done or not. I will speak the truth,” he said.
Before kickstarting the function, Congress paid homage to the 40 CRPF personnel killed in a terror attack in Pulwama of Jammu and Kashmir.