About 8,000 people, mostly Congress party workers and those who were brought by the ticket aspirants, were present during the All India Congress Committee president Rahul Gandhi’s (RaGa) election meeting organised at Dussehra Maidan here on Monday afternoon.
RaGa alleged that the BJP government in the last 15 years has done nothing for the people and indulged in massive corruption like Vyapam and e-tendering scam among others. He said the state government has spent Rs 400 crore to clean Kshipra river, but nothing happened. To justify his point, he displayed to the gathering a bottle containing dirty water, which he said had been collected from the holy river.
Referring to the closed textile mills in Ujjain, he said even Bangladesh has surpassed India in the textile sector. He promised that if the Congress comes to power in the state, these mills will be revived for providing employment to the local youth.
RaGa said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had made mistakes on Jammu and Kashmir, as a result of which the state is on fire. The Modi government opened the doors of J&K for terrorists. No politician was martyred in J&K but Army men are laying their lives there because of Narendra Modi’s mistakes, he elaborated. He also alleged that the one-rank, one-pension (OROP) scheme has not been implemented so far and the prime minister was speaking lies on the issue.
He said a couple of days back, a delegation of ex- servicemen met him and said they had trusted Modi over OROP but were disappointed now. “The prime minister claims that OROP has been implemented. He speaks lies. OROP has not been implemented so far. Modi claims but ex-servicemen said it was not executed,” the Congress leader said. “PM talks about surgical strike, Army, Navy but doesn’t talk about Army men. He makes claims. At least, tell us what you did about those who carried out the surgical strike (of September 2016),” RaGa added.
Taking a jibe at Modi for his remark that selling of pakoda is also a job, RaGa said, “If you fry pakodas, then BJP will take away the money of the oil. Moreover, it will eat fried pakodas.” He also alleged that union finance minister Arun Jaitley had allowed indebted liquor baron Vijay Mallya escape from the country. “Mallya had a meeting for 40 minutes with Arun Jaitley before leaving the country. FM has the government agencies under him and he could have informed him,” he reiterated. Continuing his tirade against the PM, RaGa accused him of allowing Mallya as well as businessmen Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi flee with the country’s money. He was referring to the PNB banking fraud allegedly involving Nirav Modi, his uncle Mehul Choksi and some others.
All India Youth Congress president Keshav Chand Yadav, leader of opposition Ajay Singh and others also addressed the public meeting. Those present on the dais included AICC general secretary and state in-charge Deepak Bavraria, AICC secretary Sanjay Kapoor, AICC observer Rahul Richariya and Kamalkant Sharma, former minister Suresh Pachouri, MLAs Jitu Patwari and Hardeep Singh Dung along with former MPs, MLAs and party office-bearers.
District Congress Committee (rural) president Kamal Singh Patel delivered the welcome address. Pradesh Congress Committee secretary Chetan Yadav conducted the proceedings while District Congress Committee (urban) president Mahesh Soni who had to propose a vote of thanks, but forgot to do so. During the event, several unexpected Congress workers also reached on the dais. Some of them also grabbed chairs, but were later disallowed by the SPG personnel.
Pradesh Congress Committee chief Kamal Nath in his short speech alleged that routes of corruption have reached up to villages and people have to pay handsomely to get BPL cards etc. He said that not a single penny received in the name of investors meet, though industries wound-up in large numbers in Madhya Pradesh during past 15 years. He said these elections will not decide the fate of one party, but rather decide the fate of the state. He assured that if voted for power the Congress will bring new legislations, formulate new polices and create a new map of development.
SCINDIA BRIEFS RAhul ON MAHAKAL’S HISTORY
Congress chief Rahul Gandhi started his election campaign in Madhya Pradesh from Ujjain and paid obeisance to Lord Mahakal on Monday. He reached Mahakaleshwar temple from police line helipad in religious attire and performed worship and abhishek in the sanctum where he was accompanied with Congress leaders Kamal Nath, Suresh Pachouri and Jyotiraditya Scindia while Jitu Patwari and Shobha Ojha were also present in Nandi Hall.
Priests Ghanshyam Pujari, Ashish Pujari and others gifted rudraksh mala, prasad and stole as mementos. He stayed at Mahakal Dharmshala and changed his clothes there after worshipping. After performing worship RaGa went to the venue of election meeting at Dussehra Maidan. During the stay, Scindia informed RaGa about the history of the temple and told him that erstwhile Scindia rulers and CMs & PMs did not stay in Ujjain as Mahakaleshwar is considered as King of Ujjain.
Gandhi MEETS CONGRESS LEADERS
Rahul Gandhi met Congress leaders of the region at the venue of the public meeting. As soon as he reached the meeting venue Congress leaders raised slogans glorifying Rahul Gandhi and accorded him warm welcome.
Earlier, addressing the gathering, State Congress Campaign Committee chief Jyotiraditya Scindia alleged rampant corruption by the Shivraj Singh Chouhan government of the state in organising the Simhastha Kumbh in 2016 at Ujjain. He alleged that the BJP government converted the Mahakumbh into corruption kumbh. He said that instead of purchasing earthen pots on the market rate of Rs 40 per piece from Kumhars, they bought it on the rate of Rs 750 per piece from an auto parts supplier. Likewise, earthen pot stands were purchased in bulk in Rs 4,000 per piece whereas the price of such stand was Rs 1,000 per piece.
7 METAL DETECTORS USED
There were 7 entry gates at the venue of the meeting where metal detectors were placed for security purposes. Cameras were placed on every entry gate and arrival of every person was recorded by them. Helipad located in Nagziri area was under tight security. The entry at the helipad was allowed to such persons whose names were in the list provided to the staff deployed there.