Sonia, Rahul fire fresh salvo at Modi

God save India from Gujarat model, says Cong chief

Sonia, Rahul fire fresh salvo at Modi

The Congress, led by the Gandhi family, on Saturday made a direct att­a­ck on the development model touted by BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi saying, “God save the country from such a model”. 

“What is happening in Modi-led Gujarat under this model? Sikhs living there for the past 50 years were being forced to leave the state,” said Congress president Sonia Gandhi, addressing an election rally in Malwa belt of Punjab. “Hey Bhagwan! Desh ko bachao is tarah ke model se (Oh God! Save the country from this model),” she said.

In Amreli in Gujarat, her son and party vice-president Rahul Gandhi attacked Modi, alleging that there is a “partnership” between the BJP’s prime ministerial pick and industrialist Ad­a­ni who is “funding” the Modi marketing blitz to return “favours”. “There is partnership between Modi and Adani,” he alleged saying that all senior BJP leaders were sidelined for the partnership with Adani. The company whose value was Rs 3,000 crore is now Rs 40,000 crore, he noted. Sonia also raked up the issue of malnutrition in Modi’s state. 

“In Gujarat every second five-year-old is malnourished and those who earn Rs 11 a day are not considered poor,” she said. Sonia alleged that around 45,000 acres of land in Gujarat had been given to one businessman (Adani) at a cheap rate and under this development model, people in the villages are still not getting potable water. Accusing the BJP of adopting an ideology in which common man will be identified by his religion, language and caste, she said, the saffron party’s ideology is of “hatred, narrow-mindedness and consistent hunger to achieve power” at the Centre. In contrast, the ideology of the Congress is of development of farmers, the poor,  the weak and every citizen of the country, the party president said, adding that Congress is for peace and communal harmony. 

In Delhi, Finance Minister P Chidambaram dismissed Modi as chief minister of an average state and said his claims of development were “exaggerated and boastful”. Gujarat is neither the best performing state nor the worst... It lies somewhere in the middle,” he said.

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