Poverty not an issue for NDA: Rahul Gandhi


Wardha (Maharashtra) : Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi Tuesday asserted that the common man had always been his party’s focus and accused the opposition National Democratic Alliance (NDA) of ignoring the poor.

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Addressing an election rally here ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, Gandhi promised that the Congress would work to alleviate poverty.

“We (Congress) see India from the common man’s eyes. Our programmes are for the poor of India. Our thinking is to take forward the poor of the country… Our opposition does not see the world from the eyes of the poor,” Gandhi told the gathering.

“I want to tell you that till there is a single poor in the country, the Congress party, (Prime Minister) Manmohan Singhji, (party president) Soniaji and I will hear his voice,” Gandhi said.

Gandhi also criticised the Bharatiya Janata Party for fighting the 2004 elections on the “India Shining” campaign.

“This is the thinking of big people. They fight for privatisation, stock exchange but do not reach your homes. But if a leader reaches your home they ridicule him because they do not understand what the poor need,” he said.

The Congress MP also came down on the NDA for harping on the issue of privatisation at the cost of the poor.

“I was just trying to recall before 2004 when they were in power which programmes they made for the poor. I could not think of any…. In the name of privatisation they sold big, big hotels, gave it to their friends. If somebody tries to hold the hands of poor, they ridicule him saying it is drama,” Gandhi added.

“They do not care what the poor think and what they want. If you have to fight for the poor you have to reach their homes and talk to them and see the world from their eyes.”

Gandhi also accused the NDA of being opportunistic.

“What has not Manmohan Singh done in five years? He has taken India forward speedily. After Mumbai, Pakistan was pressurised so much that they have been pushed to a corner, we did the nuclear treaty for your future, for power. We did big deeds, and the opposition which wanted to do the same work five years ago opposed us,” Gandhi said.