The Congress on Sunday took a swipe at the BJP government on the issue of price rise, saying unemployment and inflation were its "two brothers", with Rahul Gandhi blaming Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the problems being faced by the common people.
"The king is busy with the earnings of friends, people are suffering from inflation."
"Today, people have to think ten times before even buying items they need. Only the Prime Minister is responsible for these problems. We will keep adding voices against inflation and the king will have to listen," Gandhi said in a tweet in Hindi.
Addressing the Mehngai par Halla Bol rally' at Ramlila maidan here, Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge said the party made all efforts to hold a debate on price rise in the Parliament and the government kept avoiding it.
He said the government did agree for a debate after they fought from Parliament to streets under Rahul Gandhi's leadership , but got only five hours to discuss it, of which Congress was allocated just 28 minutes.
"GST has been increased on daily use items such as curd. Unemployment and prices are rising on one hand and on the other hand the rupee's value is going down vis-a-vis the dollar.
"I want to ask Modi ji what are you doing as unemployment, prices are rising and China is also attacking us. But he does not respond to these issues," Kharge said.
Speaking at the rally, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said, "The people in the BJP are fascists, they only wear the mask of democracy. The situation of the entire country is very concerning, the constitution is being destroyed, democracy is in danger. Modi has forgotten the things he had said during UPA rule."
"The credibility of Gandhis is highest and even more than yours (Modi's), as no one in the Gandhi family has held any position in the government including being the prime minister," he said.
Gehlot said there is an atmosphere of hatred and violence in the country and thus the need for uniting people, and the Bharat Jodo Yatra.'
He claimed that wonderful work was done under the UPA government under Sonia Gandhi and Manmohan Singh and it was made to go through a conspiracy.
"An atmosphere was created against the government by discrediting it through a conspiracy," he said.
Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel slammed the BJP over its "revdi" remark in which the party recently disparaged the freebie politics.
Former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda said input costs for farmers were increasing and their income was decreasing.
He said unemployment has reached such proportions that even for the post of peon thousands of graduates and post graduates apply. Hooda also slammed the Agnipath scheme of the government.
Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said it is easy to come into the Congress and leave, but it is very difficult to stay on and fight. His apparent dig was at Ghulam Nabi Azad, who quit the party recently blaming the leadership.
Ahead of Sunday's 'Mehngai par halla bol' rally of the party at the Ramlila Maidan here, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh said the rally was not being held as with 2024 elections in mind, but to highlight the two "biggest challenges of inflation and unemployment to the people.
"Modi government has two brothers - unemployment and inflation. Modi government has two brothers - ED and CBI," the Congress leader went on to say.
"We had protested against this even on August 5. About 70 MPs were detained, including Rahul Gandhi. People from 12-13 states are coming and we want to send an effective message to the insensitive Modi government that people are suffering from this back-breaking inflation and unemployment and solutions should be found for them," Ramesh said.
Asked about Ghulam Nabi Azad's rally in Jammu on Sunday, Ramesh said he would speak about the Congress rally not that of the BJP.
On BJP's allegation that the Congress was trying to divert people's attention from the issue of corruption, Ramesh said the party has been protesting against rise in prices for over a year.
"A rally was held in Jaipur. About 70 MPs were detained from Vijay Chowk. We have raised these issues inside and outside Parliament. We have held protests in various states. This rally is part of that series of protests.
"On September 7, we will begin the Bharat Jodo Yatra' which too will have the economic disparity as the biggest issue," Ramesh said.
Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi and a host of party leaders are slated to address the rally. Party workers from Delhi, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh, and other parts of the country, are converging for the event.
The rally comes ahead of the opposition party's 3,500-km Bharat Jodo Yatra' which will traverse the length of the country from Kanyakumari to Kashmir starting September 7.
The Congress has said the rally's aim is to highlight the issues of price rice and unemployment, and promote communal harmony in the country.
The party said its workers will continue to raise these issues as a responsible opposition and will take to the streets to fight for the cause of the common people.