Rahul slams India Shining slogan

Siddhartnagar (UP): Attacking BJP, Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi today said the party`s "India Shining" campaign was only for the leaders of the saffron brigade and not for the common people.

"In 2004 (during the general elections) the opposition had launched `India shining` campaign…They can give this slogan as their leaders do not visit your houses, don`t eat food with you, drink dirty water of your wells…they can say India is shining," he told a public meeting here.

"It is shining in their houses and air-conditioned cars but not in villages," Gandhi said.

He said though the country has made progress, it is not shining in villages and small towns. "India will shine only when no poor person is left in the country," Gandhi said.

Continuing his attack on Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati, he said the BSP chief is opposed to MGNRGS as "she sees the world from helicopter and not move about on roads, neither takes food with poors and drink water of their wells".

"People migrate from villages to towns and cities in search of employment, then why not bring jobs to villages," the Congress leader said.

The UPA government has launched loan waiver schemes for farmers as it consider them to be the backbone of the country but in UP things are opposite. Farmers` land are being snatched and when they ask for compensation, the government gives them bullets, he said.

Gandhi said during his visits to Bhatta Pasrsal and Tappal, which had seen farmers` unrest over land acquisition, he was told by the state government officials that those protesting for compensation were not farmers but Naxalites.

"When poor people in UP demand their rights they are called Naxalites by the government officials," he said.

Hitting out at ruling BSP`s caste-based politics, Gandhi said, "A government which belongs to all castes, religions and sections should comes to power in UP."

"With such a government, Uttar Pradesh would change in five years and in the next 10 years no one would recognise that it is the same (backward) state," he said.