New Delhi: Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi on Monday chaired the crucial Congress Working Committee (CWC), as party president Sonia Gandhi skipped the meet citing poor health.
In his opening remarks, Rahul fired a salvo at Modi, claiming that the government was obsessed with power and seeks to silence all who disagree with it.
The Congress vice-president charged the government with intimidating civil society for asking questions, by ‘using the cloak of national security’.
“Asking questions is what discomforts this government, for they have no answers. We must expose government's failures in upcoming Parliament session,” Rahul Gandhi declared, further alleging that the government is abusing fundamental freedoms of the people.
“Democracy, under the present dispensation, is going through one of its darkest hours,” he stated.
“Television channels are being punished & asked to shut down. Opposition is being arrested for holding the government to account,” the Congress VP added.
Accusing the Modi government of ‘swinging from one extreme to another’ in dealing with Pakistan, Rahul also addressed the issue of One Rank One Pension (OROP).
“Our jawans are being cruelly rewarded by a callous government with denial of OROP and cut in disability pensions,” Rahul said.
Rahul claimed that the government will launch a 'polarisation campaign' ahead of the UP elections to divide the electorate.
The Congress party VP said misuse of power by BJP government would only strengthen the Congress resolve to defeat such "danger designs".
"With state elections due in the coming months as we can safely expect the Modi government to launch a campaign of disinformation and polarisation. They will exploit caste and religious fault lines. We must anticipate and neutralise such devious strategies," he said.
Underlining that Congress has "successfully exposed" the Modi government's "anti-poor agenda and broken promises", Gandhi asked the partymen to continue the "struggle to expose the comprehensive failure of the Modi government on all fronts".
Highlighting the alleged failures of the government, he said atrocities against Dalits "go unabated" and the rights of Adivasis "continue to be trampled upon".
"Selectively chosen corporates are favoured, not the aam admi. Youth, even those who have good education, face the spectre of unemployment. Non-availability of bank credit has choked out small businesses. In the last 20 months, exports have registered negative growth," he charged.
Gandhi said farmers' suicides and agrarian "unrest" have increased to "astonishing levels" and the government is trying to hide its failures behind numbers that have been widely "doubted and questioned".
The BJP-ruled states are actively "diluting and undermining" laws passed by Parliament, he said dubbing them as "another disturbing trend".
"The Modi government is lobbying with states via informal channels to deny work under MGNREGA to the very poor. The government has swung from one extreme to another in dealing with Pakistan and the issues concerning J&K," he said.
He said the Congress will this year commence the birth centenary celebrations of Indira Gandhi and the main committee and several sub-committee have been constituted for the purpose.