KOCHI: A day after he announced his plan to implement Minimum Income Guarantee scheme for the poor if voted to power, Congress chief Rahul Gandhi kept trying to strike a chord with them during his visit to Kochi, perhaps giving a hint of what the party’s election manifesto for the general elections would base on.
Rahul launched a blistering attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying he was absolutely intent on dividing India into two — one for richest and other for farmers, labourers and workers. He elaborated on the Minimum Income Guarantee as a solution and also unveiled plans including a redesigned GST.
“Modi was ready to forego Rs 3.5 lakh crore for 15 of his business friends. But he’s not ready to forego even one rupee for our farmers. He diluted the MNREGA and the Land Acquisition Act which has affected millions of farmers.
“Modi has spent five years wasting India’s time by telling one lie after the other. He promised two crore jobs every year to our youngsters. But he has given maximum income guarantee to 15 of his friends."
‘For 5 years, people have watched Modi’s tamasha.’
Rahul Gandhi said: “For five years, people have watched this tamasha. Nirav Modi got Rs 35,000 crore, Mehul Choksi Rs 30,000 crore, Vijay Mallya Rs 10,000 crore and Anil Ambani Rs 30,000 crore. If Modi can give maximum income guarantee for 15 friends, then we’ll give minimum income guarantee to every Indian.”
Explaining the income scheme, Rahul said: “Like MNREGA committed right to work, like RTI committed to right to information, like food security bill guarantees right to food, the Congress Government is going to guarantee minimum income to every poor Indian. We’ll give every poor money directly in his bank account.”
Rahul said the Centre demonetised India’s economy and destroyed the entire informal sector, wiping out small and medium industries and destroying small shopkeepers.
“Modi has destroyed the economic background of the country built by the people and the Congress. He gave a GST which was fundamentally flawed. What sort of GST is this that nobody understands it? And it’s practically impossible to implement it. In 2019, we’ll restructure the Gabbar Singh Tax,” he said.
Ex-Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar clearly said he had nothing to do with the new (Rafale) deal orchestrated by Narendra Modi aimed to benefit Anil Ambani. And the result is that thousands and thousands of young Indians who could’ve got high-payment technical jobs in HAL will get no jobs. No defence capability is going to be built here.
Rahul did not spare the CPM-led LDF Government either, saying the Communists are interested only in promoting their own people even during the devastating mid-August floods.
“We’re going to defeat the CPM in Kerala and Modi in the country. The CPM and BJP are working on dividing the people of this state. The real issues of jobs and protection of farmers have been put on the back burner,” he added.
He said Congress party has done transformational things for the country.
“We believe in transformational politics. When the nation faced a wall of starvation, Congress broke it with Green Revolution.
“Within a decade we got food security. We also brought the White Revolution and made India the biggest producer of milk in the world,” he said.
Rahul said Congress would give women and youth more representation in the upcoming Lok Sabha poll.
“We need more women and youth representation. We want to see women in positions of leadership,” he said, amid huge applause from over 30,000 party workers present.
Women’s Reservation Bill will be passed if the Congress voted to power in 2019.
Congress will give minimum income guarantee for the poor. Will give every poor money directly in his bank account.
In 2019, Congress will restructure the GST.
Will ensure India builds a low-cost high-quality education system.
Will ensure more spending on healthcare and education.