Congress president Rahul Gandhi, at a combative press conference in New Delhi on Friday, slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the press and the Election Commission. Rahul, at the press conference just before the end of campaigning for the 2019 Lok Sabha election, claimed the idea of Modi had been dismantled, alleged that the poll schedule was tailor made for Modi's campaign and chided the press for 'going soft' on Modi even as they posed tough questions to him on the Congress' Nyuntam Aay Yojana (NYAY) scheme.
"We've cornered Modi. The idea of Modi, the 2014 idea, has been dismantled," Rahul said.
Rahul also mocked the prime minister for holding his first press conference just days before polling ends. BJP chief Amit Shah and Modi held a press conference at the party headquarters at the same time as Rahul addressed the media at the Congress head office. Answering a question, he asserted that the philosophy of Shah and Modi cannot be the philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi.
"Modi fought the election. He came five years ago and had a huge opportunity. As an Opposition leader, I would have liked to see the prime minister move the country forward. I would have liked to see him take on joblessness and helping farmers. But with all due respect, he lost sight of the real picture. He forgot that the Indian people did not choose him as prime minister to give speeches. He chose to abuse our vision and then use our vision, which we ourselves accepted in 2014. There's no work that's being done, and now he's distracting. He'll think up some event, some sea plane type of thing, a 'distract India' event," Rahul said.
"I have a complaint for the press: You ask me tough questions on NYAY such as 'where will the money come from?' But Modi gets easy questions on mangoes and kurtas," Rahul added. The Congress president claimed that the Congress had performed wonderfully in the role of the Opposition party by raising issues of unemployment, farmers' distress, Rafale, note ban, Goods and Services Tax and gave it an A grade.
"To tell you the truth, BJP has much more money than us. The ratio would be 1:20. Unlimited money, marketing, television. We have only truth. Truth will win," Rahul said.
Asked how many seats the Congress will win, Rahul said, "Wait for the public verdict on 23 May. We've done our job. The rest is up to the public. The public is the master. The public's mood and public's direction for the nation will be clear on 23 May. I am not going to disrespect the people of the country by judging or prejudging what they are saying. It is not for me to decide what they're going to say on 23 May. It is up to them."
With inputs from PTI
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Updated Date: May 17, 2019 17:29:32 IST