Nov 17 (The Street Press India) – Mocked by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the “Murkhon ka Sardar,” Rahul Gandhi urged voters to make their own judgment about a leader who suggested banging “thali” and using phone flashlights during the Covid pandemic.
During three public rallies in Rajasthan, Rahul Gandhi presented straightforward facts to the Prime Minister. He stated, “When the people were dying because of an oxygen crisis and lack of treatment, Modi asked them to bang the thali. ‘Thali bajao, taali bajao… Switch on the mobile phone light’… what does this mean?” The crowd cheered in response.
Rahul Gandhi questioned the crowd, “Have you in these past 10 years seen Modi with a farmer, a labourer or holding the hand of a small shopkeeper? You won’t. He travels by aircraft worth Rs 12,000 crore and a vehicle worth Rs 12 crore. He wears new clothes every day and you can see him in a photo with Adani, standing as you do with a friend. You see him going to America and hugging their President. He wrote off loans worth Rs 14.50 lakh crore of the industrialists.”
Rahul highlighted that the Prime Minister considers farmers, unemployed youth, and laborers as “murkh” (fools). He argued that Modi primarily works for the wealthy, despite making numerous promises to garner the votes of the less privileged.
Rahul added that Modi’s guarantee is now spoken of. Was the promise of Rs 15 lakh in every account fulfilled? It will never be fulfilled. Has black money been eradicated? His guarantees are for Adani; whatever he wants, he will receive. Modi elevated him from the 609th position on the global list to the second richest man in the world.
A few days ago, Modi not only labeled Rahul as the “Murkhon ka Sardar” but also stated in a rally in Rajasthan on Wednesday, “The Congress people are worried, what if the locker gets opened? The locker, which has money and gold looted from the people, will be opened. You tell me, should these people be punished or not? Kamal ke nishan par aise button dabao, aise button dabao ki unki saza pakki ho jaye. Jaise unko fansi de rahe ho na, aise button dabao (Press the button on the lotus to confirm their punishment. Press it like you are hanging them.)”
The Prime Minister’s suggestion for voters to act like a hangman received widespread criticism. Modi not only labels his opponents as thieves while avoiding commentary on corruption charges against BJP leaders but also attempts to stoke communal sentiments. He references the beheading of a tailor in Udaipur by two Muslim men last year, allegedly linked to remarks derogatory to Prophet Mohammad on social media. Additionally, Modi tells voters they can’t celebrate festivals due to rioters, terrorists, and curfews.
The Congress has remained concentrated on everyday issues impacting the common man. Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot highlighted achievements such as schools, colleges, public health centers, roads, bridges, irrigation projects, and welfare initiatives like free ration and health insurance. Rahul Gandhi discussed the party’s welfare agenda and guarantees, delving into Modi’s politics and the purported connection with Adani. He also addressed the caste census and highlighted perceived injustices to OBCs.
In response to concerns about a disoriented campaign and perceived differences between Gehlot and Sachin Pilot affecting voter sentiment in Rajasthan, the Congress leadership initiated a substantial last-minute push. General Secretary in charge of organization, K.C. Venugopal, was dispatched to Jaipur on Wednesday to address issues and rectify shortcomings. He conducted a meeting with both Gehlot and Pilot.
On Thursday morning, Rahul Gandhi arrived in the state and took steps to ensure the visible presence of both Gehlot and Pilot together. He emphasized to the media, “We are not only seen together, we are one and will remain united. We are going to sweep the election.” In all three meetings in Ganganagar, Churu, and Hanumangarh, Gehlot and Pilot shared the stage with Rahul, aiming to convey a message of unity.
Rahul Gandhi is set to spend the next three days in Rajasthan, with Priyanka and party president Mallikarjun Kharge also anticipated to address meetings in the week leading up to the campaign’s conclusion on November 23. The Congress aims to enhance its prospects by intensifying the campaign, considering reports indicating a closely contested scenario in numerous constituencies.