Rae Bareli, May 3 Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi on Friday hit out at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over its poll campaign centred around nationalism, and said that the government needed to love and respect the people of the country.
“What is the biggest form of nationalism? Keeping the country safe from Pakistan is good. But also keep the farmlands of the farmers safe. Nationalism means loving and respecting the people of the country,” Gandhi said while interacting with villagers in her mother Sonia Gandhi’s parliamentary constituency here.
She also taunted the BJP government for turning farmers into “watchmen” (chowkidars) and said that it was busy doing advertisements, while the reality was completely different.
“How many problems do you people face due to stray cattle? Have cow sheds been built as promised? When I visited Faizabad last month, our party candidate showed me a small shed that had been built only recently,” Gandhi said.
Criticising the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh, she said, “What is the condition of the farmers in the state? The person who calls himself the ‘watchman’ (chowkidar) of the country has turned India’s farmers into watchmen by making them sit in their farms to watch over their crops.”
Hitting out at the government, the Congress leader said, “The premium for crop insurance is taken from all of you. But when problems arise, you people don’t get the money for your damaged crops.
“I have travelled across the state and not a single farmer has said that he has got crop insurance money.”
Slamming BJP candidate Dinesh Pratap Singh, who is contesting against Sonia Gandhi from Rae Bareli, Gandhi said, “The man who used to claim that he was loyal and will always remain with the Congress is today contesting against my mother.”
Before wrapping up her campaign for the day, the Congress leader also held a road show in the town, which was attended by hundreds of party workers and supporters.
It was Gandhi’s sixth visit to Rae Bareli, which goes to the polls on May 6, in the last one-and-a-half months.