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Home > India > News > PTI

Gandhi surname helps, says Rahul

March 27, 2008 14:01 IST

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Calling for making the present political system a more "open", Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi [Images] admitted that he has an edge in politics due to his surname.

Rahul said that his progress in the present Indian political system would not have been easy if he was not "connected to somebody".

The Congress leader, who was addressing students of Manipal College at the TMA Pai International Convention Centre in Mangalore, added, "I am a prominent face of the problem."

Replying to a query by a student whether he would have joined politics if he was just a normal youth without the Rahul surname, he said, "I would try to be in politics but progress would not have been easy if I was not connected to somebody."

Taking part in an hour-long discussion with students whom he termed future leaders, Rahul agreed with the observation that the "present political system was a closed system and also one that is destructive".

He called on students to challenge the present system to bring about a change and said, "With your help, we would like to bring these changes."

On a query regarding the influence of Mahatma Gandhi [Images] as the source of inspiration in politics for him, he said, "I like to choose the good in everybody as opposed to the bad."

Talking to students on crucial issues including the Indo-US nuclear deal, Rahul said he was "gaining knowledge of politics" and added "It is time to look at the rest of the world not as a challenge but as an opportunity to advance and succeed".

Agreeing that respecting various ideas in the Indian polity was needed, he said it was important for everyone to understand things before talking.

"I am in the business of respecting your ideas and would not like to talk about things I myself do not understand," he told students.

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