Vidisha (Madhya Pradesh): Congressman Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday expressed optimism that the grand old party will win about 150 seats out of 230 in the state assembly elections and will form the govt with full majority.
Addressing an election rally in Vidisha, around 55 km from the state capital, Gandhi accused the BJP of purchasing MLAs in 2020 to topple the Nath-government in Madhya Pradesh.
"A storm is going to come in favour of the Congress. The party will be winning 145 to 150 seats. Five years back, you (people) elected a Congress government but BJP leaders (Prime Minister) Narendra Modi, (MP Chief Minister) Shivraj Singh (Chouhan) and (Union Home Minister) Amit Shah purchased the MLAs and stole your government," Gandhi said.
27 lakh farmers' farm loans were forgiven by the Kamal Nath-led Congress administration, which ruled Madhya Pradesh for 15 months till March 2020. However, he claimed that the BJP had misled labourers, farmers, small businessmen, and unemployed people in order to overthrow that administration.
He claimed that love, not hate, was the reason why the Congress drove the BJP out of power in Himachal Pradesh and Karnataka.
"The BJP ran a 40 per cent cut government in Karnataka...(After Congress came to power there) I told the Karnataka chief minister to return the money that was snatched by the BJP government from the pockets of poor people in five years. I told him to return the money to the poor, which the BJP had given to the rich," he said.
The former head of Congress said that the Congress has kept all of its promises made in Karnataka, including waiving farm loans and providing free bus transportation for women.
The guaranteed minimum support price (MSP) of the crop is given to farmers in Chhattisgarh, while labourers are paid a pay of Rs 10,000. According to him, this is boosting the regional economy.
In Madhya Pradesh, Gandhi reiterated several party promises, including a hike in the minimum support price (MSP) of Rs 2,600 per quintal for wheat and a subsequent increase to Rs 3,000 for paddy.
Gandhi claimed that the farmers of neighbouring Chhattisgarh don't want their land to be sold.
"A farmer in Chhattisgarh told me that he doesn't know the price of his land. He said that he has nothing to do with the price because he is not going to sell it because the Chhattisgarh government is giving the right price for his crop and waived his loan," he said.
He said, "We put money into the hands of labourers and farmers, who bought goods from small traders, boosting the local economy."
The Congress MP stated that PM Modi had once claimed to have established 500 industries in Madhya Pradesh. "Do you know any of them?" the MP questioned. Gandhi reaffirmed that if the Congress is elected to power, farm loans up to Rs 2 lakh would also be waived in Madhya Pradesh.
Accusing the BJP of giving contracts to big contractors and to Ambani and Adani, Gandhi said, "Rs 14 lakh crore loan of rich people have been waived. This is not the money of Adani. This is GST money, which is given by common people on every expense." He said that all the airports, ports, roads belong to people.
"Where did banks get the money from to waive loans? It's public money," he said.
Taking potshots at the media, Gandhi pointed out that there is only one big camera in front of him.
"At the PM's rally, you can see 50-100 cameras placed in front of him...You can see him round-the-clock on TV," he said, alleging that PM Modi talks about Hindu Dharma and Hindu-Muslim in his speeches and make them fight between themselves.
"There is one shortcoming. I talk about farmers, labourers, small shopkeepers, but they don't have the remote control of the media. If the remote control was with farmers, labourers, small shopkeepers, you would have seen Rahul Gandhi's face 24 hours on TV...The control is in the hands of Adani," he claimed.
According to Gandhi, the BJP has divided Hindustan into two distinct regions. In the poor people's category, 18,000 farmers in Madhya Pradesh (then ruled by the BJP) killed themselves, while millionaires bought mansions in the US, UK, and Japan and led opulent lives, the speaker claimed.
"There should be one Hindustan, where everyone should get respect and its backbone is farmers, labourers and youths," he said while alleging that for the first time in the country's history, farmers are paying taxes on tractor, pesticides and fertilisers.
He declared that the Congress will open two to three international airports in Chhattisgarh to guarantee the export of goods like rice, mango, and paddy if it were elected to power at the centre following the general elections.
He claimed that Madhya Pradesh has the same plans.
He accused the present Madhya Pradesh administration, led by the Bharatiya Janata Party, of corruption, citing purported anomalies in recruitment tests such as Vyapam and the Patwari scandal.
"They stole the government because they wanted to get involved in corruption," he said.
Gandhi also said that different viral videos showing the son of a Union minister (Narendra Singh Tomar), in which he is talking about transferring Rs 100 crore and more.
"This is your money and not of Tomar," he said while accusing the rampant corruption.
On social media, a video that allegedly showed Devendra Pratap Singh Tomar, the son of a Union minister, and a "middleman" discussing several crore rupees went viral. Tomar called the video phoney.
He inquired as to whether the Income Tax Department, Enforcement Directorate, and Central Bureau of Investigation had been dispatched by the Modi administration to look into this incident.
Demonetisation, according to Modi, will put a stop to black money.
"So what type of money is this?" Gandhi asked, referring to Tomar's video.
Gandhi claimed that because he had discussed Adani in Parliament, he had lost his government housing and Lok Sabha membership.
On Friday, elections will be held for 230 seats in the Madhya Pradesh assembly.