Bargarh (Odisha): Lamenting that Odisha has become an “unemployment centre” under the BJD government, Congress chief Rahul Gandhi Friday promised to fill the 1.5 lakh government posts lying vacant in the state if his party returns to power after the elections.
He claimed that both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had failed to provide jobs to the unemployed youths in the state.
“Can anyone present at this meeting claim that they have been provided a job by Modi or Patnaik,” Gandhi asked at a public meeting here.
“Odisha has become the centre for unemployment and its youths are migrating to other places in search of jobs. What has Naveen Patnaik done for providing employment to youths,” Gandhi asked.
“If voted to power, the Congress will fill all vacant posts, including 30,000 posts of teachers and 5,000 posts in medical services,” he said.
He also promised to waive farm loans, hike MSP for paddy to Rs 2,600 per quintal, build cold storages, set up food processing units near agricultural fields and other facilities for farmers.
During his previous visit to Korapout on March 8, Gandhi had promised free education for girls, marriage assistance for poor girls and steps to ensure passage of women reservation bill in Parliament.
Wooing the people of Odisha, Gandhi said if elected, the Congress government will leave no stone unturned to ensure development of the state and welfare of its people. Steps will be taken to emulate the Chhattisgarh development model in Odisha, he said.
“In Chhattisgarh, the Congress had promised to set up food processing units and cold storages near farmlands for development of farmers. We already have initiated works in this regard. I have inaugurated a food processing unit recently.
“Whatever we have done in Chhattisgarh, can also be done in Odisha for which we need your support and votes in the upcoming polls,” the Congress president said.
Lashing out at the 19-year-old BJD government in Odisha, Gandhi said Patnaik had promised to set up cold storages, provide irrigation facilities and set up food processing plants across Odisha, but he did “nothing”.
Gandhi said the Congress government in Chhattisgarh has already waived farm loans and provided Rs 2,500 per quintal MSP for paddy and returned unused land to farmers.
The Congress chief also accused Patnaik of being “involved” in chit fund and mining scams and alleged that the chief minister is “remote-controlled” by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Gandhi said stern action will be taken against those involved in corruption these scams in Odisha and elsewhere if Congress comes to power.
He also ridiculed the functioning of the Odisha government and alleged that a handful of bureaucrats are running the state where the voice of poor, farmers and Dalits are not heard. Simultaneous polling will be held in Odisha for its 21 Lok Sabha seats and 147 Assembly constituencies in four phases on April 11, 18, 23 and 29.