Chennai: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday termed the April 6 Tamil Nadu Assembly election a fight to save Tamil culture and said that the AIADMK-BJP combine will be badly defeated.
Addressing a public rally at Salem along with DMK chief M.K. Stalin and leaders of other allies, he accused the BJP leadership of ill-treating Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K. Palaniswami and alleged that this was owing to his “corruption”.
Palaniswami’s bowing and prostrating before Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and the RSS leadership is equivalent to insulting the great “Tamil Culture”, he said, adding that the Congress believes in equality. “We believe in equality and any relationship which is not equal is useless,” he said.
He alleged that the Modi government brought in an education policy that is designed to harm Tamil Nadu, but the Chief Minister didn’t say anything. “Millions of people in the state lost their livelihood, lost their future, lost their jobs because of demonetisation GST – but the CM didn’t say one word,” he added.
Gandhi warned that there was a full-scale assault on the idea of Tamil Nadu and called upon the people to be on guard against it.
“RSS and Narendra Modi want everyone to be subservient and to bow before their supremacy and they intend to do the same on Tamil Nadu and people of Tamil Nadu. They don’t know that the great people of Tamil Nadu have never bowed before anyone in history and that they would reciprocate love and attachment given to them twice over,” he said.
While the previous elections were between the AIADMK and the DMK, “the present one is between the AIADMK, Modi, (Home Minister Amit) Shah and RSS on the one side and Tamil people on the other side”, he claimed.
Gandhi expressed confidence that in the April 6 elections, people will vote for the DMK-Congress combine and “the AIADMK, Modi, Shah and the RSS will bite the dust”.
The new government in the state “is going to be a government that is not controlled by New Delhi”, he said.
The Congress leader, however, alleged that Indian democracy, the Constitution and all independent institutions are under attack and said that real independence will not happen with only Stalin becoming the Chief Minister but instead by removing “saffron power from New Delhi”.
“The BJP, RSS have unlimited money… they will try again and again to destroy our nation. The only way to stop them is to defeat them in Tamil Nadu and then defeat them in the Centre,” he said.
In a tweet later, Gandhi said: “This is more than an election- it’s the fight to save Tamil culture, history and interests. Thank you, Tamil Nadu for your encouragement & support.”
Stalin said that the Congress-DMK combine is slated to come to power with a landslide but called upon the cadres not to be complacent and to work at the ground tirelessly for a bright Tamil Nadu.