Home >Politics >Policy >Congress calls for a ‘new freedom struggle’ against Modi govt

Mumbai: Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday urged the people to elect his party to power, while its leaders declared the need for a “new freedom struggle"—against the Narendra Modi government.

In remarks made on the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, close by Gandhi’s Sevagram Ashram, Wardha, Gandhi said the people of India “had tried Modiji and the gaadi (car)had failed and the engine has burst" in just four years. “Now you need to give the Congress party a chance to govern. These people have wasted a lot of time. Now we have to set the country right." Gandhi said, adding the Congress party will work round the clock to deliver jobs for the youth.

Earlier, a special Congress Working Committee (CWC) session attended by former party president Sonia Gandhi, former prime minister Manmohan Singh and other leaders adopted a resolution stressing the need for a “new freedom struggle, a massive movement to combat the forces of divisiveness and prejudice, to confront the Modi government".

The resolution attacked the “blatant hypocrisy of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) that vilified and rejected Mahatma Gandhi during his lifetime, and which today has brazenly proclaimed itself to be his champion. It is its ideology that was responsible for spreading the atmosphere of hate that led to the Mahatma’s tragic assassination".

Referring to a blogpost written by Modi on Mahatma Gandhi, the Congress leader said the Prime Minister stood for all those things the Mahatma fought against.

“Gandhiji believed in Satyagraha and he gave his life to this principle. I want to ask people who have gathered here: Do you think the promises Modiji made in 2014 were truthful? Did Modiji speak truth with you?" Gandhi asked.

The rest of Gandhi’s speech concentrated on the alleged scam in the Rafael deal with France and Modi’s “failure" to honour the promises he had made to the youth and farmers in 2014.

He claimed during the Congress-led rule, farmers were able to sell their soybean, cotton, tur and gram for 4,500, 6,000, 9,000, and 7,000 per quintal. “The prices that you are getting now are 2,000, 3,500, 4,000, and 3,500 per quintal. Tell me now if Modiji has kept his promise of giving higher remunerative prices to the farmers," Gandhi said.

The Congress president reiterated his allegations on the Rafael deal, saying “Modiji snatched the contract away from the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and gave it to Anil Ambaniji". “When he became the prime minister, Modiji said he was not a prime minister but a chowkidar (watchman). What type of chowkidari is this? He has put 30,000 crore into Anil Ambaniji’s account. It is your money. HAL (Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd) has been making fighter aeroplanes for 70 years. It has made the MIG, Hawk, Jaguar, Sukhoi. Anil Ambani has not made a single aeroplane in his entire life and he has a debt of 45,000 crore taken from public sector banks. Yet, he has been given the contract by Modiji," the Congress president said. He said the prime minister was yet to answer the four questions he had raised in parliament on the Rafale deal.

The Congress president also repeated his charge that in the last four years, Modi had written off a debt of 3.20 trillion that “his 15 to 20 rich industrialist friends carried".

Earlier in the day, the Congress president, Sonia Gandhi, Manmohan Singh, and other Congress leaders paid tributes to Mahatma Gandhi at the Sevagram Ashram. Later, Rahul Gandhi led a padyatra of Congress workers through Wardha city.

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