Rahul Gandhi slams Mayawati over anti-MNREGA comments
Bahraich, Nov. 23 (ANI): Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday slammed Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati over her comments suggesting the Central Government's flagship rural employment programme had failed to make an impact on the lives of the poor in the state.
"May be she (Mayawati) has forgotten, but she had run an advertisement campaign against the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Guarantee Act (MNREGA) of the Indian Government. She even said that the MNREGA would not prove to be of any benefit to the poor people at a rally in Lucknow in October 2007," Gandhi told a mammoth political rally here.
"In rest of India, the MGNREGA has benefited millions of people. In rest of India, people accept MGNREGA and job cards are rolled out. However, in Uttar Pradesh, if job cards are made, the benefit goes to the village council head. If funds are doled out, it goes into the pockets of the local ministers," he added.
Rahul Gandhi, who has become the face of the ruling Congress Party ahead of the 2012 Uttar Pradesh assembly polls, further dismissed Mayawati's allegation that the Central Government was not forthcoming in dispatching development funds to the state.
"We send as much funds as the Uttar Pradesh government demands from us. If ten people have asked for funds, we send money for ten people. If a million people ask for funds, we send money for a million people. If ten million people ask for funds, then we send money for ten million people. It is as simple as that," said Gandhi.
Expressing concern at the shocking state of affairs in Uttar Pradesh, Gandhi asserted that Mayawati had lost her 'connect' with the masses.
"May be she (Mayawati) is not even aware of what is happening under her nose in Uttar Pradesh. Even this is quite possible. She does not reach out to you, she does not interact with you, she does not see the state of hospitals with her own eyes, she does not travel to villages, she does not eat your food, she does not talk to you, due to which it there is no more closeness in her relationship with you," he said.
Rahul Gandhi, who is leaving no stone unturned in giving a tough fight to the ruling Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) in the forthcoming state assembly elections, began his five-day long 'Jan Sampark Abhiyan' programme from Barabanki, Uttar Pradesh, on Tuesday, to garner support for the Congress.
The Uttar Pradesh elections, which are scheduled in the early part of 2012, is being seen as a stepping-stone for the Congress Party to establish a firm political base in India's fifth largest and most populous state before the 2014 general elections. (ANI)
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