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Sonia targets BJP, AAP in maiden poll rally in Delhi

March 30, 2014 20:29 IST

Congress chief Sonia Gandhi on Sunday launched a scathing attack on Narendra Modi, saying those who don't believe in secular values cannot grasp the spirit of patriotism, and will lead the country to destruction if they get power.

"Some people are beating the drum of patriotism... You tell me if those who don't believe in secular values can grasp the spirit of patriotism? No, they can't. They want to grab power for themselves and their people by misleading you," she said.

In her first public meeting in Delhi since the announcement of Lok Sabha polls, Gandhi said patriotism flows in the veins of Congress and one can learn it from the "sacrifices" made by party leaders.

"People with bad intention would lead the country and society to destruction and darkness... I have faith in your wisdom. I am sure you won't make any mistake and support Congress," she said.

The BJP's ideology spreads extremism, "divides" society and pits one brother against another while Congress believed in keeping the society together and looks at everybody as one.

"Congress wishes well to even its adversaries," she said.

She termed Lok Sabha polls as the clash between two ideologies and asked people to defeat the BJP's "extremist and divisive ideology".

She highlighted the "historic" work done by the UPA government while seeking mandate for another term.

The Congress president also attacked AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal for "running away from government" after becoming chief minister of Delhi.

Targeting Kejriwal, whose party was mainly responsible for the rout of Congress in Delhi polls last December, Gandhi said some people believed running government was like a "child's play".

"You have seen how they have run away from Delhi," she said.

Wooing Dalits and the poor -- groups which had largely deserted Congress for AAP in Delhi Assembly polls -- Gandhi highlighted laws enacted by the UPA government banning manual scavenging and giving legal status to street vendors. "Police and administration would no longer trouble hawkers," she said.

Reaching out to Muslims, she said UPA government has implemented most of the recommendations of the Sachar Committee.

If voted to power, she said, Congress will provide health security to people and pension to the needy. 

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