Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi at the election rally at Chenari in Rohtas district on Wednesday. Picture by Sanjay Choudhary
Bachhwara (Begusarai), Oct. 7: Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi today reached out to voters in Bachhwara, Begusarai district, by walking down from the dais and mingling with them instead of making a touch-and-go event of a rally followed by two more.
In his speech to a sizeable crowd at Ayodhya Maidan in Begamsarai village, Rahul charged the BJP with dividing society. "The BJP... makes one person fight another... one religion fight another... people of Maharashtra fight people of Bihar. It organises riots in poll-bound states," he said, asking people to be cautious on the communal harmony front.
Tearing into the promises Prime Minister Narendra Modi made before Lok Sabha elections last year, Rahul asked what they had got in 16 months of NDA rule. "Modi promised to bring back black money stashed abroad and deposit Rs 15 lakh in everybody's account. Has anybody here received the money," he asked. Reminding all of the promise to provide jobs to 2 crore people in the country every year, Rahul asked: "Has anybody here got a job as promised." The crowds replied in the negative cheering him further. Rahul hit out at Modi for claiming a no-nonsense approach to corruption and pointed out external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje's dealings with former IPL cricket czar Lalit Modi, wanted by the Enforcement Directorate.
Pointing at the Vyapam scam in Madhya Pradesh, Rahul said the state's BJP chief minister, Shivraj Singh Chauhan, was involved. He said Modi "wants to tell his Mann ki Baat (PM's monthly radio programme, which translates to 'to speak one's mind'), but never wants to listen to people's mann ki baat."
"This is a Prime Minister who wears costly suits and hobnobs with suited capitalists. He visits US, China, England to meet 'suited-booted' people, but has anybody seen him mingle with distressed farmers, the poor or unemployed," he asked. "Nitish has brought Bihar on the right track. We will first defeat the NDA in Bihar and then in other states. We will go on to throw the BJP out from the Centre," he said.
Rahul named RJD chief Lalu Prasad just once in his speech. He later flew to Barbigha (Sheikhpura) and Chenari (Rohtas) for rallies there.