In a frontal assault against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge alleged on Thursday that the Women’s Reservation Bill is nothing more than a jumla (false promise) by the former leader who commits the cardinal error of thinking that public memory is short.
Addressing the Krishak Sah Shramik Sammelan in this town of poll-bound Chhattisgarh, the visiting leader said,
“The actual implementation is slated after 2034, post-census. At that juncture, neither Mr Modi nor me will be there. If the BJP had possessed the willpower they could have accomplished it this very day!
Their sole motive is to confuse the populace and cross the next general election by disseminating the false impression that Mr Modi is achieving something. The Bill must include a quota for the backward segment and that is precisely why we desire an OBC census.”
Accusing the Prime Minister of speaking untruth in order to garner votes, Mr Kharge said that two crore jobs per annum were promised, besides Rs 15 lakh in every citizen’s bank account (following return of black money stashed overseas) and doubling of agrarian income.
“In the period after the present dispensation assumed the reins at the Centre, legislation vis-à-vis labourers and peasants was weakened. Only laws benefiting the well-heeled were passed. History does not forgive those who fight against the indigent. The BJP is working against the interests of the impoverished. Five per cent of Indians possess 62 per cent of the nation’s property in stark contrast to 50 per cent of the population owing only 3 per cent. Observe how the chasm between the poor and the rich is widening,” he added.
Accusing the BJP of attempting to replace the Constitution, Mr Kharge accused it of gradually indoctrinating the masses.
“When the foundation stone of the new Parliament building was laid, the then President Ram Nath Kovind was not invited to do the honours. During the inauguration, President Droupadi Murmu was not accorded the respect she deserves. The BJP members are akin to elephants who have two sets of teeth – one for eating and the second for show,” he quipped.
The Congress bigwig alleged that the searches “without evidence” by the Enforcement Directorate and the Income Tax Department were aimed at instilling trepidation.
He expressed grief over the demise of Prof MS Swaminathan – the father of Bharat’s Green Revolution. A brief silence was observed as a mark of respect.