Rahul’s Himachal Rally: Virbhadra Singh to lead party in assembly elections again
Mandi: In a public rally held at Paddal Ground in Mandi on October 7, 2017, the National Congress Vice-President, Rahul Gandhi, has announced Virbhadra Singh as the high command’s choice for Chief Ministerial candidate in the upcoming HP Assembly elections.
Rahul said Virbhadra is a ‘Fakir’ in the true sense. He urged the party leaders and workers to stand united to elect him as their Chief Minister for the seventh time.
On the other hand, Bhartiya Janata Party has still kept the state leaders in a dilemma. BJP is internally divided into two camps. The political activity and demand of the Union Health Minister JP Nadda have significantly increased recently.
Former Chief Minister, Prem Kumar Dhumal, is being over-shadowed by Nadda’s active presence. The Prime Minister Narendra Modi had also shown overwhelming appreciation towards the Union Minister at the recent political rally held in Bilaspur district.
While addressing the rally, Rahul focused on comparing development model of Gujrat and criticised the NDA government for demonetization and GST. He did not speak of the corruption charges against the Chief Minister and other repeated allegations of BJP regarding the presence of forest and mining mafia in Himachal.
Chief Minister provided employment to around 70,000 youth in the government sector, he said.
The Congress-led state government gave unemployment allowance of Rs.1000 to the unemployed whereas there is no such provision in Gujarat. The government opened or upgraded as many as 15000 schools whereas the Gujarat government closed 13,000 schools during last five years, said Rahul.
HP government opened four medical colleges, 57 degree colleges as opposite to Gujarat where just 25 degree colleges have been opened and no medical college during last five years.
The financial assistance for housing for different categories is Rs 1.30 lakh to poor in Himachal and mere Rs 70,000 in Gujarat. Social security pension in Himachal is Rs.700 per month and mere Rs.450 in Gujarat.
Rest, Rahul repeated the same claims regarding development in education, healthcare, youth employment etc. that the Chief Minister had been making.
He blamed Union government and PM Narendra Modi for the decline in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and fall in GDP by 2 percent and said it led to mismanagement of the economic reforms.
He said the NDA Government has created trouble for all sections of the society by imposing Goods and Service Tax (GST). Services are now more expensive.
Instead of one tax throughout the country, the NDA has imposed five different types of taxes completely derailing the economy with the imposition of 28 percent tax from the very onset.
Modi government failed to provide employment to two crore youth, as he had promised before elections. The Modi government failed to protect the interest of farmers as hundreds of farmers are committing suicide in the country. Loan waiver policies of the Union government also made a mockery of farmers in the name of waiving off loans, said Rahul.
People were family members to me and I don’t have servant-master relation with them,
He said that 95 percent of the educational institutions are opened during the successive Congress regimes in the state. During last five years the government has opened or upgraded around 230 health institutions in the state, he said.
BJP Misinforming Public over Credit for AIIMS
He alleged BJP of misinforming people about the AIIMS. The government provided the land for AIIMS as demanded by the Union Health Ministry, but the BJP state leaders claimed that Union Government sanctioned AIIMS and gave funds for it, he said.
I want to make it clear that it was the responsibility of the central government’s to provide state share for undertaking development and the funds provided for AIIMS was not from anyone’s personal pocket, it was the funds from ‘Bharat Sarkar’ from the share of the state which the state government deserve and have full right to ask for,
said the Chief Minister adding
The Central Government can boast of funds provided to Union territories which were under the direct control of the Union government but it can’t claim the share of states as its own.
He said irrespective of the government in the centre, it is the moral duty of the Union government to release the funds earmarked for the states.
At the time of the formations of the state, there were hardly 288 kilometers of road and today the total road length stands 37,000 kilometers, he said
The state achieved 100 percent electrification, every village has drinking water facilities, he said. There are137 degree colleges in the state and 57 were opened in this tenure of my government.