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Amethi's Sunday 'dhamaka': The Rahul-Priyanka roadshow

May 04, 2014 21:07 IST

Amethi's Sunday 'dhamaka': The Rahul-Priyanka roadshow

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Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi on Sunday held an impressive roadshow in family pocket borough Amethi as a huge crowd chanted slogans praising the Congress vice-president who has been representing the constituency for the past 10 years.

A large number of Congress supporters had gathered in Amethi to catch a glimpse of both Priyanka and Rahul who is pitted against Bharatiya Janata Party's Smriti Irani and Aam Aadmi Party's Kumar Vishwas in the May 7 Lok Sabha battle for Amethi seat.

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The vehicle carrying them moved slowly as the huge crowd waved Congress flags and shouted slogans eulogising Rahul.

Some enthusiastic supporters showered rose petals at them.

Both Rahul and Priyanka, guarded by SPG commandos, stepped out of the vehicle to pay obeisance at a ‘dargah’.

The two-km roadshow by the Gandhi scion comes on the eve of BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi's campaign in Amethi in support of Smriti Irani.

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Image: On the eve of Modi's visit, Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi hold a roadshow in Amethi
Photographs: INC/Twitter

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Amethi's Sunday 'dhamaka': The Rahul-Priyanka roadshow

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Both Rahul and Priyanka did not speak to the media. This was the second roadshow by Rahul and Priyanka in the constituency. Earlier, Rahul, accompanied by Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka, staged a roadshow ahead of filing his nomination for the constituency on April 12.

Priyanka, who had campaigned for Sonia Gandhi in Rae Bareli, which went on polls on April 30, has been aggressively seeking support for her brother.

Rahul has been camping in Amethi for the last days to woo voters.

Earlier in the day Rahul launched a frontal attack on the Bharatiya Janata Party saying its intentions on development issue are not clean and if voted to power, the party intends to abolish welfare schemes introduced by the United Progressive Alliance government.

"I have got information that intentions of the BJP and (Narendra) Modi are not clean. They intend to abolish legislations like food security and employment guarantee," he told an election rally at Tekarmafi in Amethi.

Pulling out all the stops to woo voters, Gandhi further alleged that Modi's development model was limited to one or two industrialists, of which one was Adani.

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Image: Locals poured into the streets to get a glimpse of the Gandhi siblings
Photographs: INC/Twitter

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Amethi's Sunday 'dhamaka': The Rahul-Priyanka roadshow

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The Gandhi scion claimed farmers, who had been deprived of their land in Gujarat, were not being considered as native residents and were being forced to leave the state.

The Congress-led government waived Rs 70,000 crore loan of the farmers, he said adding on the other hand, Modi gave land worth Rs 40,000 crore to Adani alone.

"In Gujarat, 45,000 acre land of farmers was given to Adani at the rate of Rs 1 per square metre which was later sold at the rate of Rs 800 per square metre. Before giving land to Adani, Modi didn't ask farmers even once. We fought for Bhatta Parsaul... leading to the enactment of land acquisition law," he said.

"Farmers in Gujarat are a harassed lot. They are being forced to leave the state. They are being told they are not native residents. Some of the farmers met me and narrated their stories," Gandhi said.

The Congress vice-president said he respected women a lot and realised that they played an important role in the working of the country and had, therefore, created opportunities for 12 lakh of them by connecting them with banks.

"Modi talks about giving power to women. I want to tell him that women of India are not weak. They are internally strong. Modi should learn to respect women," he said.

In an apparent reference to the snoopgate row, Gandhi alleged policemen in Gujarat used to tap phones of women and harassed them.

 The Congress vice-president said Modi talks about the Gujarat model where budget for education and health is Rs 8,000 crore but despite this, the facilities are very poor.

Training his guns on Modi, he said the BJP prime ministerial candidate talks about the entire country but in Maharashtra, the Shiv Sena and BJP people assault those from Uttar Pradesh and force them to leave.

Gandhi said his party stands for politics of uniting people while "others create differences between Hindus and Muslims".

"We want a country where no one remains hungry, every person has a roof of his own. A place where free treatment facility is available and there is a smile on the face of a poor person. If the Congress comes to power, we will do all this," he said.

Talking about his emotional connect with Amethi, Gandhi said, "I came here with my father Rajiv Gandhiji at the age of 12. At that time there were no roads, power, drinking water, industries and school. I have not come here with political intention, I have a homely relation. Our relationship is that of heart which opposition parties cannot digest."

"Rajivji framed farsighted development schemes as a result Amethi has changed today. Those, who are opposing me, Soniaji and Priyankaji, are those who used to oppose Rajivji as well. Some people have come here with the intention to separate us," he said.


Image: Rahul and Priyanka smile at supporters during the roadshow
Photographs: INC/Twitter

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