With the third phase of the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections closing in, the war of words continues between the major players in the state. Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra joined the campaign trail for the first time and took the opportunity to take on Prime Minister Narendra Modi at an election rally in Rae Bareli attacking him over his claims that Uttar Pradesh had ‘adopted’ him. She said that the state had no dearth of youth for an outsider to help its development. She joined her brother and Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi at the rally.
Referring to Modi’s remarks claiming that he’s a son of Varanasi and a son of Uttar Pradesh, Priyanka said: “…a thought came to my mind, does UP need to adopt an outsider?”
“PM had said UP has adopted him and that he will look after UP’s development. Does UP need to adopt anyone to look after its development?” Priyanka Gandhi said at the rally, adding: “Is there no youth here that can take UP forward? Each youth here has the potential to become a politician and work for the development of UP… every one has that hope.”
Rahul Gandhi also attacked the Prime Minister over his statements, saying that relationships don’t develop just by talking but by nurturing.
“He (Modi) makes relationships wherever he goes…He went to Varanasi and termed Ganga as his mother and said he was the son of Varanasi…In 2014 Lok Sabha polls, he promised to change Varanasi,” he added.
Both brother and sister also attacked Modi over ‘hollow promises’, with Priyanka Gandhi saying he has done nothing for Varanasi.
“Nothing but rhetoric by Modi government. PM has done nothing for his constituency Varanasi, he made hollow promises,” said Priyanka Gandhi.
Rahul Gandhi further criticised him over the same saying that the Modi government has not done enough for the poor and the farmers. He further put out the demands of the farmer saying,”Waive off farmers’ loans, slash electricity bill by half and give right price for produce.”
In another rally at Fatehpur, the Congress Vice President, using a Bollywood reference, took a jibe at PM Modi’s ‘achhe din’ promise and said that when people were expecting Shah Rukh Khan’s Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, people got Gabbar Singh from Sholay.
“Prime Minister Modi promised us Achhe Din. We were shown Dilwale Dulhania the movie. 2.5 years later, we saw Gabbar Singh come out,” he said.
Samajwadi Party leader Dimple Yadav too joined in the criticism of the Prime Minister slamming the Modi’s poll promise to waive off farmer’s loan. She said that he could have done it in a year after being elected as the prime minister. She further added that PM Modi does only Mann ki Baat but never does Kaam Ki baat.
BSP supremo Mayawati joined the chorus of voices attacking PM Modi over his ‘adopted son’ remarks and said that despite his ‘drama’ over it, the people of Uttar Pradesh would never vote the BJP into power. She also criticised the government over the issues of triple talaq and Uniform Civil Code (UCC) and said that her party does not believe in the Centre’s interference in the matter.
She further added that the ongoing feud in the Samajwadi Party will only harm Akhilesh Yadav and his team.
On the Samajwadi Party side, the feud within the party seemed to prolong as party leader Shivpal Yadav responded to nephew and Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav’s jibe in Mainpuri on Thursday. He said that he has the support of Mulayam Singh Yadav and people and that he need not reply. Speaking at a rally in Mainpuri Akhilesh took a jibe at his uncle and said that unless the people of Etawah (Shivpal’s stronghold) were up to something, he would win the elections.