Rahul’s Modi tirade continues unabated Print
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altJehlum Post News Network/New Delhi /Apr 29, 2015/Rahul Gandhi, who has seized on the farmers' issue to attack the Government, Wednesday targeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi, taking a dig at him for his frequent foreign travels and asking him to talk to farmers in India. "Farmers in the Mandis (wholesale grain markets) are crying with pain in their hearts," the Congress Vice President, just back from a sudden tour of Punjab where he met distressed farmers, said in the Lok Sabha. "Our Prime Minister is on a tour of India right now.

He has come here for some days. He should go to Punjab for sometime and meet the farmers and talk to them in the mandis (granaries)", he said, triggering protests from BJP members. A controversial comment by Haryana Agriculture Minister O P Dhankar that farmers committing suicide were "cowards" and "criminals", came in handy for Rahul to pillory the Government. While farmers were "crying with pain in their hearts", the Haryana Minister was calling them "cowards", he said amidst a chorus of "shame, shame" from the Opposition benches. Amid protests by BJP members, Gandhi took a swipe at the Prime Minister's 'Make in India' initiative, questioning whether farmers are not contributing to 'Make in India' by providing food to the entire country. "When there was hailstorm, the government did not help. State governmments used to give bonus, farmers tolerated its non-payment. Farmers were lathicharged when they asked for fertiliser. Now their produce is not being lifted from Mandis," he said. Gandhi accused the government of not procuring the produce of farmers, a charge rubbished by Food Minister Ram Vilas Paswan who hit back by suggesting that the Congress leader was trying to become a "martyr by cutting a finger".

Keeping up the attack on the Government outside Parliament, Rahul asked whether the 'Make in India' initiative is only for about five to ten 'friendly capitalists". "When you are talking about 'Make in India', is the farmer not making in India? Is the labourer not making in India? Is the small businessman not making in India? he said while responding to questions from reporters. Rahul went on to cite his train trip yesterday during which he said a small businessman asked him, "What is make in India, what is my role in this". The Congress Vice President then added, "So, Make in India is only for crony capitalists, 5-6-10 friendly capitalists. Make in India should be for everybody. Respect the farmer who has been making India for 50 years". Asserting that government is purchasing each and every grain from farmers, Paswan insisted that several decisions have been taken for the welfare of farmers which had not happened in the past 10 years of the UPA. Uproarious scenes were witnessed in the Lok Sabha with Congress and AAP members storming the Well when Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur, MP from Punjab, was allowed by Speaker Sumitra Mahajan to interject after Gandhi's plea for a fair deal to the farmers in the state.

The Minister questioned Gandhi on his visit to Punjab to assess farmers' condition, asking why he had not toured his own constituency Amethi in Uttar Pradesh. Harsimrat Kaur, daughter-in-law of Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, also took a swipe at Gandhi wondering where he was when farmers were facing the fury of hailstorm, apparently referring to his 57-day mysterious sabbatical. Congress members, led by their Leader Mallikarjun Kharge, objected to the Minister being allowed to intervene during Zero Hour, saying this was not the convention. Agency

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