“Not a farmer’s sarkaar”: Rahul Gandhi in Parliament

Rajat Kain

rahul_parliamentCongress Vice President Rahul Gandhi is back as an aggressive politician.

Following his visit to Punjab mandis on Tuesday, he attacked Narendra Modi government once again on the floor of the Parliament. Accusing the NDA Union government of neglecting farmers across the country, he made a special mention about the food grains lying in mandi with farmers getting bare minimum help from the government. Both at the centre and at the state.

“Your government says ‘Make in India’ hona chahiye… hamaari sarkaar, aapki Sarkar, but not farmers’ Sarkar. Indian Prime Minister is in the country for some time. He should visit Punjab too and listen to farmers. Does farmer not do ‘Make in India’?” said Gandhi, taking on Modi government over its ambitious ‘Make in India’ manufacturing initiative.

This is Rahul Gandhi’s third speech in Lok Sabha in 8 days after he has returned from 56-days leave of absence. Ever since his return, he has addressed a massive ‘kisan’ rally at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar, trekked to Kedarnath shrine to pay homage to the victims of 2013 flash floods and travelled general compartment to Punjab taking stock of the plight of the farmers in distress after the nonseasonal rains.

The Congress leader has been opposing the BJP-led NDA government over the issue of Ordinance on the land acquisition and its overall policies on farmers, alleging them ‘anti-farmer’.

Strongly taking on the BJP government over a controversial statement made by Haryana Agriculture Minister OP Dhankar, Rahul Gandhi said “Farmers are crying in mandis, there are in pain. Your minister says farmers committing suicide are cowards, criminals”.

The members of the ruling party attempted to refute with Rahul Gandhi’s intervention but Opposition was unrelenting as several Congress members rose on their benches condemning the Haryana minister’s remarks.

On Tuesday, Dhankar had said “Suicide is a crime. A person who commits suicide runs away from his responsibilities. Such people are cowards and the government cannot stand by such cowards or criminals,”

Massive controversy has been brimming since morning with several leaders condemning Dhankar’s remarks. Unfortunately for the BJP, Dhankar’s remarks have come at a time party is battling hard to defy to perception of being anti-farmer and anti-poor. BJP is a ruling party in the state of Haryana.

Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi was speaking in in the Lok Sabha on the farmers’ crisis after Congress party gave a notice to suspend the Question Hour. Though the notice was rejected by the Speaker, the house was adjourned for a brief while as Opposition members marked their protest against the government over deepening agrarian crisis.