Kicking off his poll campaign in Bihar, Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday addressed a public meeting in Gaya, in support of mahagathbandhan (grand alliance) candidate Jitan Ram Manjhi of the Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular).
Mr. Gandhi slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi for promising to put ₹15 lakh in everyone’s account, which was a lie, while the Congress wished to give ‘Nyuntam aay yojana’ (Nyay) to the poor.
“By putting ₹15 lakh in everyone’s account PM Modi would have destroyed India’s economy…you reposed your trust in chowkidar (watchman) but he betrayed you…did anyone here get ₹15 lakh in his account,” he asked. “The Congress with its Nyay scheme will annually put ₹72,000 in the accounts of the poor. This works out to ₹3.60 lakh in five years and will not destroy India’s economy.”
“So you’ve have to decide whether you want a lie of ₹15-20 lakh or ₹3.60 lakh in five years in your account,” Mr. Gandhi said.
Accompanied by State Congress leaders and former BJP MP Shatrughan Sinha, who on April 6 joined the Congress, Mr. Gandhi addressed his first Lok Sabha campaign rally in the State for the mahagathbandhan candidate. Former Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi is pitted against NDA candidate Vijay Manjhi (JD-U). Gaya (reserved) seat will go to the poll on April 11.
“If PM Modi will give money to the rich people, Rahul Gandhi will give money to poor people,” he declared, adding that the “poor do not hire chowkidar as it’s a luxury only for the wealthy people”.
Mr. Sinha too addressed the public meeting for the first time in the company of Mr. Gandhi.