Sonia backs Rahul, flays UP govt

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Varanasi: Strongly backing Rahul Gandhi, Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Thursday slammed the Uttar Pradesh government over the "brutalities" perpetrated on farmers in Greater Noida villages, saying the state has descended into "anarchy and lawlessness".

With a just a year left for Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, she expressed confidence that Congress could come to power in the state as well.

"The state has become `andher nagri` (dark city), where there is no law and order. There is anarchy and lawlessness in UP," Gandhi said addressing a party convention here.

A week after Rahul`s visit to Bhatta-Parsaul villages of Greater Noida where he empathised with farmers agitating against land acquisition, Sonia said she was "ashamed" to see the "brutalities" perpetrated in Bhatta-Parsaul and accused the Mayawati government of using state machinery to acquire land for projects.

On Monday, Rahul attacked the UP government and led a delegation of farmers from these villages to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to complain against police "brutalities".

His remarks that women were raped and men were burnt to death had triggered a controversy with media reports quoting the villagers questioning the veracity of the allegations.

Addressing the convention yesterday, Rahul repeated the charge of police repression in Greater Noida but was silent on rape of women and burning of men alive.

"Congress workers should go to the people and fight for their problems. I am sure victory will be ours in UP as well. Congress party has always upheld your trust," she said.

Giving a stern reply to the parties trying to put the UPA in the dock over the issue of corruption, she said no other party had taken hard measures like the Congress-led government on the issue.

"The political parties try to put UPA government in the dock by raking up issue of corruption. No other government initiated hard measures like ours on corruption. Did NDA government initiate such stern measures?" Gandhi said while addressing a rally here.

"Jinke ghar sheeshe ke hote hain, wo dusron par patthar nahi marte (Those who live in house of glass should not pelt stones on others)," Gandhi said taking potshots on opposition parites especially BJP.

Stating that popularity graph of the party was rising, Gandhi said that recently concluded assembly polls in five state showed that COngress got the maximum support of the people.

"BJP was limited to four-five seats only. Left is also wiped out in these elections", she said.

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