Rahul Gandhi at Congress rally in Odisha: BJP does not see the problems of the poor
Nabarangpur: “The NDA leaders talk a lot but do nothing for the people. The pain and problems of the people are not visible for them” said Rahul Gandhi, the Congress Vice President, while addressing a huge Congress rally at Nabarangpur in Odisha.
“Odisha is a rich state; it has huge wealth, natural resources and forests. But though the state is rich, the people are poor here. There is no shortage of anything here. But your government take away your natural resources and sell it to big industrialists and only a handful people, not the people, avail benefits” said Rahul Gandhi taking on the BJD government in the state and continued, “The water for irrigation in Odisha is not reaching the people as it is being diverted to rich industrialists. I am not saying that industrialists should not get water and electricity. But what Congress believes is the poor also must get benefits alongwith the business people. There should be a balanced approach for development”.
Referring to UPA policies, the Congress leader commented, “In 2004, the Congress-led UPA Government at the Centre waived off debts of poor farmers, worth Rs. 70000 cr. When we were initiating that the opposition tried to block it by asking from where we will have funds for it. But we were determined and told them that farmers are the pillars of our nation and we will arrange money for their welfare. We showed them how to make funds for it. Then the opposition said loan-waiving was wastage of money. We replied that helping farmers is never wastage of funds for Congress. By helping farmers, we are actually helping our nation”.
He went on further striking a chord with the farmers there and said, “We then had fought for the farmers’ rights in their lands at Niyamgiri. The farmers had just asked one thing, if rich people can get adequate market prices for their lands, then why can’t the farmers? Congress felt that their demands were right. We took up their matter and fought for their rights. The Land Acquisition Law enacted by the UPA Government is its outcome. Now no one can grab any farmer’s land forcibly. Further, this new revised bill ensures four-times more market prices for the land acquired. I am also happy to convey that the farmers get 3 times more price for their crops than the NDA period”.
Rahul Gandhi then focussed on welfare of women and commented, “It is the women who run our country and development is not possible without them. We gave you 50% reservation for women in Panchayats and now we want to grant reservation for you in Parliament and assemblies. The bill for the same is still pending as the opposition has been blocking it. But I assure you that the Congress party will ensure its passage. We are also happy to connect lakhs of women with banks through Self Help Groups (SHG).Our manifesto for 2014 elections promises all-women-run police stations across the country”.
“Congress treats every citizen equally. For us all are equal - Hindu, Muslim, Christian. We work for the poor, Dalits, Adivasis, women and the youth and we fight to protect their rights.. Support Congress and elect our candidates” said the Congress Vice President while concluding his address.