REMUNA: Targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi for not fulfilling promises, president of All India Congress Committee (AICC) Rahul Gandhi on Friday announced that if elected to power, the Congress Government will launch a surgical strike against poverty in the country.
Alleging that the BJP-led Government at the Centre is only protecting the interests of big industrialists and millionaires, Rahul, while addressing the Paribartan Samabesh here, said the Congress, if voted to power, will bring a new law for the benefit of farmers. “They (farmers) will not have to go to jail if they are not able to repay loan,” he said. “You (Prime Minister Narendra Modi) are welcome to help people like Nirav Modi and Vijay Mallya flee the country after defaulting bank loans amounting to thousands of crores of rupees. But we stand for the common people, farmers and the working class and we would share their burden,” he said.
Announcing that Congress, if elected in Odisha, will enhance the minimum support price (MSP) of paddy to Rs 2,600 per quintal, Rahul promised that steps will be taken to resolve all problems faced by farmers. Criticising the PM for forgetting his promise to create two lakh employment opportunities, the AICC chief announced that the Congress will fill up all the 22 lakh vacancies in Government jobs within one year of coming to power at the Centre. Besides, 10 lakh jobs will also be created at the panchayat level, he said.
Rahul said implementation of GST and demonetisation aggravated the unemployment problem as a result of which 70,000 youths are losing their jobs in the country everyday. He also criticised the Naveen Patnaik Government in Odisha for not taking any steps to create employment opportunities for youths.
Stating that money will be deposited in the accounts of 25 crore people of the country under Nyuntam Aay Yojana (NYAY), the Congress president said the scheme will be implemented on a priority basis in poor States like Odisha and Bihar. Every poor family will get Rs 72,000 under the scheme for five years and five crore women will benefit from NYAY, he said. The AICC chief said the Land Acquisition Act was passed by the UPA Government for protecting land rights of tribals.
However, the Modi Government was trying to dilute the provision of the Act which states that land cannot be taken from tribals if they do not agree. He announced that interest of tribals will protected if Congress is voted to power.
Targeting the BJD Government in Odisha, Rahul said farmers have been neglected in the State. While the Congress Government in Chhattisgarh waived farm loans and fixed MSP of paddy at Rs 2,500 per quintal, the paddy MSP in Odisha is only Rs 1,760 per quintal, he said.
Congress candidate from Balasore Lok Sabha constituency Navajyoti Patnaik, president of Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) Niranjan Patnaik, senior Cabinet Minister from Chhattisgarh TS Singhdeo and party candidates for Assembly segments under the Parliamentary seat were present.