Invoking Karnataka's 12th century social reformer Basavanna, Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday said the policies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi were "not inclusive" as he ignored farmers but waived off loans of big industrialists.
"Modi speaks about Basavanna but his policies are not inclusive. If he can waive off ₹25 lakh crore worth loans of big industrialists, why can't he help farmers," he said at a public rally in Karnataka's coastal Udupi district. Rahul, who is on a two-day visit to poll-bound Karnataka, the third in over a month—told the gathering that though farmers had pleaded for the right Minimum Support Price for their produce, it was not fulfilled. "In contrast, our government in the state has spent thrice the amount on irrigation projects than the Modi government did for the entire nation,” said Rahul.
“We do not spread hatred, we abide by the principles of Basavanna,” said Rahul Gandhi, a day after the state cabinet agreed to grant status of religious minority to Lingayats and Veerashaivas, who are followers of Basavanna.
He also lauded the state's youth for the IT revolution they spearheaded in Karnataka.
Noting that one person could not take the country forward, Gandhi said the nation had progressed due to the work of the 120 crore Indians.
"Wherever Modi goes he says nothing has happened in the last 70 years. He is insulting your parents, poor farmers, labourers and small business men of India," he said.
Five state-run banks were started in Udupi district and the Congress has ensured the services of the banks reached every corner of the country, he added.
Addressing another rally in the port city of Mangaluru, Gandhi said as Modi had only one more year left, he should work towards generating employment to fulfill at least his promise of providing 2 crore jobs during his tenure.
"Make in India, Start-up India and all his policies are a huge flop," he said, adding that many NDA ministers had agreed that unemployment was highest presently compared to the last eight years.
“We do not spread hatred, we abide by the principles of Basavanna,” said Rahul Gandhi, a day after the state cabinet agreed to grant status of religious minority to Lingayats and Veerashaivas, who are followers of Basavanna
The party chief also accused the PM of "helping his industrial friends" in converting their black money during the 50-day note ban period from November 10 to December 31, 2016, while "the common people had to stand in queues to exchange their hard-earned money".
Stressing that the country doesn't run on false promises and speeches, he said: "This (upcoming Karnataka assembly) election will be run by candidates who have worked hard for the people and the party. We will defeat our opponents with love and truth."
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, Karnataka Congress President G Parameshwara and Lok Sabha MP from the state KC Venugopal were among the other party leaders present at the rallies.
Rahul also visited Gokarnanatheshwara Temple, Rosario Church and Ullal Dargah in Mangaluru and interacted with the fishermen community in Udupi.
BJP Karnataka hit back at Rahul, saying “Banks have not waived off corporate loans, they have written off, meaning they will recover it." Siddaramaiah promptly replied, saying BJP at least admitted that loans of large industrialists have been written off, and asked them to request PM Modi to do the same for farmers.
With IANS inputs.