‘Soojh-boojh’ ki sarkar, not ‘suit-boot’, Jaitley tells Rahul

New Delhi : Taking a dig at Rahul Gandhi for his 56-day sabbatical, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government was a “soojh-boojh ki sarkar”, not “suit-boot ki sarkar” as claimed by the Congress vice-president recently.

Replying to a debate on the finance bill in the Lok Sabha, Jaitley with Modi seated beside him, also hit out at the Congress for politicising the farmers’ issue, on a day Gandhi was in Maharashtra’s Vidarbha to highlight the plight of farmers.

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He said raking up farmers’ issue “has become a tradition now. We should all be concerned about farmers. But nobody should be allowed to use farmers as a political instrument”.

“This is a ‘soojh-boojh ki sarkar’ (a wise government). Let there be no illusions about it,” he said.

Targeting Gandhi, the senior Bharatyiya Janata Party leader said: “It is good to be suited but dangerous to be booted out.”

Reacting to Gandhi’s taunt that Modi is often abroad, Jaitley quipped: “At least we know where the prime minister is… His trips are a national duty. There is a difference between a national duty and disappearance for a jaunt.”

Referring to Congress member K.V. Thomas’ remarks that the prime minister made 16 foreign trips, Jaitley said India’s stature in the comity of nations has increased.

“India is now a leader even in an area like disaster management. This is no mean achievement,” he said.