Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of being hypocritical in dealing with corruption. Gandhi made the statement at a campaign rally in Chikmaglur district in poll-bound Karnataka.
“He comes here and speaks of corruption,” Gandhi said. “But his own party here is led by someone who has spent time in jail.” He was apparently referring to the Bharatiya Janata Party’s chief ministerial candidate BS Yeddyurappa, who was jailed for 23 days in connection with an illegal mining case in Chikmaglur district in 2011.
The Congress president continued “He [Modi] does not see corruption there. When he himself changes the Rafale jets’ contract to give benefit to his friends, he does not see corruption. He does not see corruption when [BJP President] Amit Shah’s son Jay Shah suddenly becomes rich.”
India’s prime minister needs empathy to succeed, Gandhi added. “Modi believes nothing happened before he came to the office,” he said. The Congress president accused the BJP government of failing farmers in India but providing loan waivers to the rich.
Gandhi also targeted the BJP government in Gujarat, which Modi led for over a decade until he became prime minister. “The Congress government in Karnataka provides free education to girls from kindergarten to post-graduation. In Gujarat, the BJP has privatised 90% of educational institutions,” said Gandhi.
The Congress president earlier visited the Sringeri Sharada Peetha mutt, which his grandmother Indira Gandhi and father Rajiv Gandhi had visited during their stints as prime minister.
Indira Gandhi won the 1978 bye-polls from the Chikmaglur district and returned to power after her defeat in 1977. “You stood with my grandmother during her difficult times,” said the Congress president. “Whenever you require my help, you just let me know that I will rush to your help.”