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Sonia to Odisha voters: Don't get misled by tall promises

April 05, 2014 15:48 IST

Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Saturday cautioned people against political parties making 'tall pre-election promises' and asked voters not to get misled and carried away.

"The country is passing through a very crucial period and a phase of trial. There are people who talk big and approach voters with tall promises," Gandhi told a party election meeting at Khariar in Odisha, often described as the country's hunger zone.

"You should never trust these people who show you dreams. You must realise that they are not with you at all as their only agenda is to grab the kursi (chair) and not to serve people," she said without naming any political party or leader.

The people must not get misled by taking these parties at their face value and seriously apply their mind before casting their votes in the forthcoming Lok Sabha and assembly elections, the UPA chairperson said.

She claimed that Congress had always been with the poor, dalits, tribals and the downtrodden and had backed the people during crises.

Citing the instance of Niyamgiri Hills in the state, she said, Congress stood 'solidly' behind the tribals of the region when the Biju Janata Dal government was all out to hand over the hills to a company for mining.

"Rahulji immediately took up the matter and ensured that the rights of the tribals were fully protected and prevented proposed mining in the area despite state government's attempts."

As far back in 1967 Indira Gandhi addressed problems faced by the people of drought-prone Kalahandi in Odisha and established Indravati multi-purpose project for irrigation of vast areas.

Despite many hurdles the UPA government had brought the Food Security Act which provides rights on ration for all to usher in a hunger-free India.

The UPA government also implemented the Forest Right Act to safeguard the interests of the tribals and forest dwellers. The measure, she said, would go a long way in ensuring welfare of the tribals by giving them rights over land.


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