While praising Andhra Pradesh for giving for producing great Congress leaders, Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday said that if the grand old party comes to power in 2019, they will give Special Status to Andhra Pradesh.
“Congress party has a very old and loving relationship with Andhra Pradesh. Andhra Pradesh has always given direction to this country. Whether it is leaders or millions of women who work in Self Help Groups,” Gandhi said while addressing a rally in Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh.
He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had promised Special Status to the state for 10 years but it has been four years since he came to power and yet no step has been taken by him towards the same.
“Several things were promised to you under the Special Status. National status for Polavaram project, iron industry in Kadapa, metro rails and highways for the capital, 12 National education institutions. And the fact of the matter is, this is not empty words, this is a commitment from Govt of India to people of Andhra Pradesh. All promises made by the Govt were broken by PM Narendra Modi. Mr. Modi doesn’t understand that this is a promise made by a Prime Minister. When PM Modi doesn’t give what is AP’s right, he disrespects the people and leaders of Andhra Pradesh,” he said.
The Gandhi scion then hit out at PM Modi over Rafale deal and the recent controversy surrounding absconding liquor baron Vijay Mallya and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
“Under the UPA government, 126 rafale aircrafts were bought for 526 crores each. Public sector company, HAL was given the contract. HAL has been making military aircraft for 70 years. Narendra Modi becomes the PM and he personally changes the contract. A plane that was bought for 526 crore each, Modi bought for 1600 crore each. Mr. Modi gave the contract to his friend Anil Ambani, who has not made a single aircraft in his life,” he said.
Training guns at the government over the Mallya-Jaitley meeting, Gandhi said, “Here the Finance Minister has been approached by a thief who has stolen Rs 9000 crore of the public sector money and the former does not stop him. The possibility is that the Finance Minister allowed Vijay Mallya to leave in exchange of something. A deal was made by the Finance Minister and Vijay Mallya. And in the meantime, the PM, who claims to be the chowkidaar of the country, has not even said a word. If the PM was really the chowkidaar, he should have removed the Finance Minister. But, he himself is corrupt. ”
The Congress Chief further said that they are interested in making India where people of all religions, castes stay happy together and where women are treated with equality and dignity.
“We are interested in making India a place where people from lower castes are not beaten up and killed mercilessly. We don’t want an India where Rohit Vemula is forced to commit suicide. We don’t want an India where minorities are scared to walk outside. We want an India where all of us stand together and face the challenges together. Congress party is the spirit of India,” he said.
Earlier in the day, the Congress Chief visited Peddapadu Village to pay his respects to Former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Late Damodaram Sanjivayya. He also met and interacted with the residents of Peddapadu Village.
Rahul Gandhi also interacted with students in Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh.
He then paid floral tributes at the samadhi of Former Chief Minister Kotla Vijaya Bhaskara Reddy, Kisan Ghat in Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh.