Thara (Gujarat): Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi on Sunday asserted that his party will sweep the Gujarat state polls in December, as a “tsunami is coming and the (ruling) BJP is scared of it”, and exhorted his party not to speak low of the office of Prime Minister even while criticising the government.
He said the electoral battle between the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress was a “battle of truth versus lies”, but asked his party to exercise restraint even while criticising the government’s policies and not get personal.
“(Prime Minister Narendra) Modi may say anything about us, but we will not indulge in any loose talks about him and maintain the decorum of the office of Prime Minister.”
Gandhi was referring to some party leaders who during the election campaign termed Modi as “feku (one who makes baseless claims)” or “gappabaaz (a big liar)”.
In the fourth leg of his three-day pitched regionwise campaigns, Gandhi exhorted the people to demonstrate their anger through votes.
He spoke an entire sentence in Gujarati at a rally, going beyond the cliched Gujarati greeting “kem chho”, and said: “Gujarat ma Modiji aave, Amit Shahji aave, UP na CM Yogiji aave, toye Bhajapa sarkar nahi aave (Narendra Modi, Amit Shah or UP CM Adityanath Yogi may come to Gujarat, but BJP government won’t come).”
Speaking at a rally in Thara in north Gujarat’s Banaskantha district, he said: “The Congress workers have tolerated the BJP rule for 22 years and now it is high time. Show it at the polling booths and to everyone what you feel about GST, note ban and the government taking everyone for a ride on the Narmada dam, and bring about a change.”
Referring to the overall agriculture sector distress in Gujarat, Gandhi averred that the farmers had done everything for the nation: they gave their sweat and blood. “You can exempt the debts of big rich industries, but (why) you can’t do this with the farmers?”
On a three-day visit to north Gujarat, the Congress Vice President has been campaigning in the region since Saturday, after completing similar sojourns in Saurashtra (west Gujarat), central Gujarat and south Gujarat.
Gandhi, who had said on Saturday that his party was still not happy with the new GST relief and wanted it to be capped at 18 per cent, asserted again that he would do his best as the Opposition against the “Gabbar Singh Tax” and that he would remind everyone how the note ban “helped thieves turn black money into white”.