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Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Rajya Sabha speech didn’t touch up on unemployment, price rise, says Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge

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Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday of speaking false things about the UPA government and claimed that his speech in the Rajya Sabha was only focused on criticising the Congress and did not touch upon the issues of unemployment, price rise and economic inequality.

Talking about Modi’s reply to the debate on the Motion of Thanks on the President’s Address in the Rajya Sabha, Kharge said “those who do not believe in the Constitution are preaching on patriotism to the Congress”.

“Modiji, in your speeches in both the Houses, you only cursed the Congress. Despite being in power for 10 years, instead of talking about himself, he only criticises the Congress party. Even today, he did not talk about price rise, unemployment and economic inequality. Actually, the government does not have any data. NDA itself means No Data Available government — Census 2021 has not been conducted, there is no employment data, there is no health survey. The government hides all the statistics and spreads lies. Modi ki Guarantee is only to spread lies,” Kharge said.

“Those who did not believe in the Constitution, did not participate in the Dandi March and the Quit India Movement have the audacity to today preach patriotism to the Congress party,” he added.

“Modiji said countless false things about the UPA government. I want to ask — the unemployment rate during the UPA rule was 2.2 per cent, why is it at a 45-year high in your tenure?” Kharge asked.

The Congress chief said during the 10 years of the UPA rule, the average GDP growth rate was 8.13 per cent, and asked why it was only 5.6 per cent during the current government’s tenure.

According to the World Bank, India had become the world’s third-largest economy in 2011 itself, he said.

“We brought 14 crore people out of (not-just-multidimensional) poverty in 10 years. By nitpicking speeches from here and there, you are only spreading lies,” Kharge said.

He said the progress that India has made in digital transformation, its foundation was laid by the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) under the Aadhaar-DBT-bank account framework.

“We had already enrolled 65 crore Aadhaar cards till 2014 and direct transfer of subsidies had started under DBT-PAHAL. Under Swabhiman Yojana, we had also opened 33 crore bank accounts for the poor,” Kharge noted.

“Modiji said something about PSUs (public sector undertakings). Let us remind that your ‘Sell and Loot’ policy led to full/half/or partial privatisation of 147 PSUs till April 2022,” he said in a post on X.

There are 30 lakh posts lying vacant in the government, the Congress leader said, adding that most of the Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribe (ST) and Other Backward Classes (OBC) posts are vacant and nearly three lakh posts are lying vacant in five ministries — railway, steel, civil aviation, defence (without troops) and petroleum.

“You talked about Eklavya schools, but did not say that 70 per cent of the teachers in these schools are on contract basis,” he said.

“It is unfortunate that the gap between our exports and imports has increased by three times in the last 10 years and despite knowing this fact, the government does not accept it as a problem and has not taken any corrective measures,” he said.

Published By:

Ashutosh Acharya

Published On:

Feb 7, 2024

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