Rahul Gandhi takes on Jayalalithaa, criticises state government on various fronts

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi has been on a war footing in the Tamil Nadu leg of his campaign. With Congress serving as junior partner to DMK, the Gandhi scion hopes to ride the usual trend in Tamil Nadu politics — of ruling party not winning consecutive elections — and rejuvenate the party. In his election rallies on Saturday, he attacked the Tamil Nadu CM J Jayalalithaa on a number of issues.

On 2015 Chennai floods

While addressing a rally in Madurai, the Congress leader took potshots at the Tamil Nadu CM and claimed that he would come from Delhi to meet people during crises and extend them a helping hand. On the other hand, he said that the AIADMK chief could not meet her people. “Tamil Nadu does not need a government which is run by a person who stays within four walls and does not even have the decency to come out and see what happened when floods hit Chennai," the Deccan Chronicle quoted him as saying in his rallies.

File photo of Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi. PTI

File photo of Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi. PTI

On economy and unemployment

Rahul Gandhi also criticised the AIADMK on its alleged mishandling of the economy. He claimed that the state has been lagging in several industries, while power generation is still an unsolved issue. “Among Dalits in Tamil Nadu, 90 per cent are landless. Among the poor households, 50 per cent earn their livelihood through manual labour. Unemployment rates have gone up and several lakh youths are unemployed in Tamil Nadu,” The Indian Express quoted him as saying.

On corruption

He added that industrialisation is suffering as no one wants to set up their facility in the state due to the rampant corruption. "While industry has been coming to the state to set up facilities, in the recent past, industrialists do not want to establish their business in the State due to the high level of corruption," the Business Standard reported.

Tamil-nadu

On state's debt

The 45 year-old leader blamed the state government for the looming debt crisis. He claimed that each person in the state owes a debt of about Rs 2 lakh. The Business Standard reported that Tamil Nadu's outstanding debt in 2014-15 was Rs 1,81,036 crore and is expected to increase to Rs 2,11,483 crore.

On prohibition

Prohibition has been the rallying point between the two Dravidian giants — AIAIDMK and the DMK. Both parties have promised to implement it if they are voted back to power. Congress' ally DMK took a step further, with its chief campaigner MK Stalin assuring that it would be the first act of the DMK government. According to the Deccan Chronicle, the Congress leader claimed, "Her liquor policy has taken Rs 65,000 from every single family in Tamil Nadu. Vote for Congress-DMK and we will reduce the number of shops to zero”.

With election campaigning to end on the 14 May, the war of words is all set to reach its fever pitch.


Published Date: May 09, 2016 01:27 pm | Updated Date: May 09, 2016 01:27 pm


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