Rahul asks UP voters to give Congress 5 years

Sitapur (UP): Lashing out at non-Congress governments of Uttar Pradesh for "selling Ram, caste and religion" for the past 22 years, Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi today asked voters to give five years to his party for development of the state.

"These parties have looted your hard earned money, sold Ram, religion and caste…never talked about progress and development in the past 22 years," Gandhi said addressing an election meeting here.

The Congress general secretary said that he visits other states marching ahead on the path of progress and see people of the state contributing and the lack of development is UP fills him with anger.

Attacking the BJP for its India Shining slogan of 2004 and Samajwadi Party for embracing former BJP leader Kalyan Singh, he said that his party has stood alone and never embraced people like Kalyan Singh and would not do so ever.

Stressing that he would not budge till the state`s progress is in place, Gandhi said that there was a need to think of the future, which leaders of Uttar Pradesh were not doing.

Establishing a direct contact with the audience, Gandhi sought the names of a few and got others to raise their hands during his address.

Telling the audience that the mobile phone in the hands of people in villages was a result of forward looking thinking of his father, late prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, he said that he was told about it (mobile phone) when he was 12 or 15 years old that the day phone reached villages they would wake up.

Gandhi said, "the phone in your hand might be a new one but the thought behind it is 20 years old". "People dreamt of fighting the British and they who were world powers were thrown out", he said adding that the present leaders of the state do not think of the future and only concentrate on the present and think how to loot funds.

The Congress leader asked the youth to think of the future and realise their strength and stressed that the day they started doing it, no one would be able to stop the progress of the state and it would be strong enough to shake the world.

Referring to the various central government schemes, he said that MNREGS and loan waiver for farmers were based on the feedback of the people and said that farmers, labourers and common people have taught him more than he got to learn from his education in America and England.

Seeking people`s support for the Congress, he asked them not to judge him by his words but by his work.