Rahul tears off paper, says mere list of promises no good
Congress star campaigner Rahul Gandhi was a big draw at his first poll rally in Lucknow on Wednesday.
An impressive crowd converged at the DAV College grounds in the crowded Moti Nagar locality to have a glimpse of the Gandhi scion, who made a passionate appeal to them to vote the Congress party to power.
"If you want to change Uttar Pradesh and put Uttar Pradesh on the fast track like the Congress ruled states, rise and vote for the Congress', he appealed amidst cries of "Rahul tum sangharsh karo ; hum tumhare saath hain" (you lead the strugg#8804 we are with you).
Accusing the Bahujan Samaj Party and Samajwadi Party of making "only promises", Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday tore a piece of paper at an election meeting to drive home the point that "mere lists" of assurances were of no use.
"They promise that they will give power, water, employment and if not employment then unemployment allowance...this is mere list of assurances...," he said at an election meeting and tore a paper it to stress his point.
"Did you understand," he asked, referring to his act of tearing the paper, and said "only promises will not do".
He then charged BSP chief Mayawati and SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav with not honour their commitments made in the past.
With inputs from PTI
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Image: Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi addresss a rally in Uttar Pradesh
'Fighting elections not for the sake of seats, but for future of people'
Rahul Gandhi was dressed in his usual white kurta-pyjama and sported a dark unkempt beard. He was accompanied by All India Congress Congress Committee treasurer Moti Lal Vora, Samajwadi Party-turned-Congressman Rashid Masood, former prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri's son Anil Shastri besides senior UP Congress MPs including Jagdambika Pal and minister R P N.Singh. Earlier, he also addressed a rally at Bakshi-ka-Talab, one of the rural assembly constituencies on the outskirts of the city.
However, only Anil Shastri, Rashid Masood and Rita Bahuguna Joshi were given a chance to address the audience. Surprisingly, Rahul did not care to introduce any of the local candidates other than Rita Bahuguna Joshi.
However, he made it a point to emphasise, "It was after a gap of 22 years that the Congress was in the thick of the electoral battle for Uttar Pradesh and this fight was aimed at building a new Uttar Pradesh in order to provide a future for the people of this state who have remained a target of neglect for more than two decades."
Rahul who appeared to be in combative mood, said leaders who have been fighting against corruption "could not see corruption in Karnataka, UP or that of Babu Singh Kushwaha and Mayawati."
Kushwaha, a former family welfare minister in Mayawati government who is an accused in the multi-crore National Rural Health Mission scam, was recently inducted in the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Asserting that thousands of crores of rupees have been provided for Lucknow under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission, Rahul and asked the people to question their chief minister as to where it has gone.
Stressing that he has not come to the people with only promises, Rahul said people should go and listen to leaders of the BJP, BSP and SP and make up their mind and if they wanted to change the state, they should back Congress.
He said Congress was fighting the elections in the state not for the sake of seats, but for the future of the people and the youth.
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Image: Rahul Gandhi walks ahead of the members of Special Protection Group during an election campaign rally at Gorakhpur
Photographs: Pawan Kumar/Reuters
'If BSP, SP return to power they will make promises but do nothing'
"BJP came and sought votes in the name of Lord Ram but people got nothing ... SP and BSP came and sought votes on caste lines...you supported them but nothing happened," he told the electorate.
He also dismissed BJP's much hyped "India shining" slogan as a "farce." According to him, "the slogan was just picked up out of an advertisement and intended only to mislead the masses, without caring to understand what they needed most."
Rahul proposes to go a road-show in Lucknow on Thursday. Polling in the state capital is scheduled on February 19.
The Congress leader said though the country was marching ahead, UP was lagging behind. "UP is standing still," he remarked.
"It is your loss and not that of your leader, as he has everything," he said, asking people to visit states ruled by Congress and see how the government was functioning there.
Earlier, in Unnao, he said heavy voter turnout in the ongoing polls indicated that the youths were supporting the Congress.
"Youth are supporting the Congress all over the state and this is the reason behind the voter turnout touching 60 to 65 per cent," an elated Rahul said.
Appealing to the electorate to give five years to his party to usher in all round development, he said both the hands (government at the Centre and state) were required for speedy progress.
"Both hands are required for doing work...there is a government at the Centre and only one hand is working...give us government in UP and both hands would work," he said.
Lashing out at Mayawati and Mulayam Singh Yadav, he said the BSP supremo has been chief minister four times and the SP leader three times. "If they return to power they will again make promises but do nothing," he added.