Congress chief Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday, 12 March, attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi with jibes over Goods and Services Tax (GST) and Masood Azhar. He was speaking at a rally in Adalaj village of Gandhinagar district, held after the Congress Working Committee meeting.
At the same event, Patidar quota agitation leader Hardik Patel joined the Congress and Priyanka Gandhi addressed her maiden rally after assuming charge as Congress general secretary.
Earlier in the day, in a resolution passed at the Congress Working Committee (CWC), the party alleged that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was "cynically exploiting" the issue of national security to divert attention from his "colossal failures" and "persistent falsehoods".
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- The Congress held a rally in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s home state to sound its poll bugle for the crucial Lok Sabha elections
- The party also held a public meeting in Adalaj in Gandhinagar district of Gujarat with the slogan of ‘Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan’
- The CWC meeting was held in Gujarat after a gap of 58 years. It was last held in the state in 1961 (at Bhavnagar)
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CWC Meet Schedule
The Congress leadership is scheduled to hold a prayer meeting at the Sabarmati Gandhi Ashram in Ahmedabad, followed by the CWC meet at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel national memorial in the city.
After the CWC meeting, senior Congress leaders, including Rahul Gandhi, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Manmohan Singh, as well as current and former party chief ministers will attend the ‘Jan Sankalp’ rally, state party unit chief Amit Chavda said.
(With inputs from PTI.)
What Can Be Expected From CWC Meet?*
Top Congress leadership, led by party President Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi and former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, will deliberate on key issues for the Lok Sabha elections beginning 11 April at the CWC meet.
Besides giving final shape to its Lok Sabha election strategy, the party will demand answers from Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on what it calls “failures” and “unfulfilled” promises of the government.
The party leaders will also discuss ways to corner Modi and his government on issues of governance, agrarian and economic crisis, unemployment and lack of job creation, national security and women safety.
Congress President Rahul Gandhi's Schedule for the Day
Here’s Rahul Gandhi’s schedule for the day:
Prayer meeting at Gandhi Ashram, Sabarmati, Ahmedabad
CWC meeting at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Memorial in Ahmedabad
Public meeting at Trimandir Ground, Adalaj, District Gandhinagar, Gujarat
CWC Meet to Focus of 'Real Issues' The Country Faces
Besides giving final shape to its Lok Sabha election strategy, the party will demand answers from Prime Minister Modi and the BJP on what they call "failures" and "unfulfilled" promises of the government.
Top Congress leadership, led by Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi and former prime minister Manmohan Singh, along with other senior leaders will deliberate on key issues for general elections beginning 11 April.
Party leaders will also discuss ways to corner the Modi government on issues of governance, agrarian and economic crisis, unemployment and lack of job creation, national security and women's safety.
The party is of the view that the narrative for the general elections needs to be steered towards "real" issues and problems confronting people of the country, from what its leaders see as the "propaganda" plank of the current regime, especially after the Pulwama attack and the subsequent air strike on terror camps in Pakistan.
Sources said the party will issue a statement after the CWC.
Congress leaders feel that the party needs to demand answers from the prime minister on status of the promises made by him five years ago and on his governance track record.
Sonia, Rahul, Priyanka Arrive in Ahmedabad
Congress President Rahul Gandhi, General Secretary for UP East Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi have arrived at Ahmedabad ahead of the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting.
Rahul, Priyanka, Sonia Arrive at Sabarmati Ashram
Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and Sonia Gandhi arrive at Sabarmati Ashram, to attend prayer meet on anniversary of 'Dandi March'.
Rahul, Sonia, Manmohan, Priyanka Attend Prayer Meet at Sabarmati Ashram
Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi, Manmohan Singh and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra attend prayer meet on anniversary of 'Dandi March' at Sabarmati Ashram.
Senior Congress Leaders Arrive at CWC Venue
Senior Congress leaders Ambika Soni, P Chidambaram, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Jyotiraditya Scindia arrive at CWC venue.
Rahul, Priyanka, Sonia Arrive at CWC Meet Venue
Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi, Manmohan Singh and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra have arrived at the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Memorial in Ahmedabad for the CWC meet.
CWC Meet Kicks Off in Ahmedabad
The Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting kicked off in Ahmedabad, Gujarat – Prime Minister Narendra Modi's home state – ahead of Lok Sabha elections.
Hardik Patel Reaches Venue of CWC Meet
Patidar leader Hardik Patel reaches Sardar Patel Smarak, where the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting is underway. He was accompanied by Alpesh Thakor.
Moment of Silence Observed for Pulwama Martyrs
Congress leaders and members observe a moment of silence at the CWC meet to pay respect to Pulwama martyrs.
Resolved to Defeat RSS/ BJP Ideology of Fascism
Congress President Rahul Gandhi took to Twitter to say that the Congress resolves to defeat the RSS-BJP ideology on the anniversary of Dandi March.
Supporters Wait for Congress Leaders at Gandhinagar
People wait for Dr Manmohan Singh, Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi to address the public meeting at Adalaj in Gandhinagar.
CWC Meet Ends, Rahul Leaves for Gandhinagar
The CWC meet has ended. Rahul Gandhi leaves for Gandhinagar to address a rally.
CWC Meeting Ends, Rahul to Address Rally in Gandhinagar Soon
The CWC meeting in Ahmedabad has ended and Congress President Rahul Gandhi is scheduled to hold a public rally soon. Media reports have also suggested that general secretary of the AICC in charge of eastern Uttar Pradesh, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra will also hold her first public rally.
Sonia Gandhi Accuses PM Modi of Playing 'Victim Card'
UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday, 12 March, accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of playing the "victim card" as she said people of the country were the victims of his "wrong policies".
She was speaking at the CWC meeting at the Sardar Patel National Memorial.
According to sources, the senior Congress leader in her address lashed out at the Modi government for 'politicising' issues related to national interest.
She also called for highlighting the achievements of the previous UPA government along with emphasising on the need to move forward in providing a new vision for the country.
Former prime minister Manmohan Singh, who also addressed the meeting, talked about the agrarian crisis, hampered industrial growth and unemployment under the present regime at the Centre.
The meeting started with a two-minute silence in memory of the victims of Pulwama terror attack.
Priyanka Targets Modi Govt in Maiden Rally on PM's Home Turf
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra targeted the Modi government, adding she was saddened by what was happening in the country.
She was addressing her first political rally in Gujarat after assuming charge as Congress general secretary.
Priyanka said the Modi government did not fulfil its promises of providing jobs to crores of people in the country.
Hardik Patel Joins Congress; Praises Rahul, Attacks Modi
Patidar quota agitation leader Hardik Patel joined the Congress in the presence of party president Rahul Gandhi and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi.
Justifying his decision to enter active politics ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, Patel said he could now work for the six crore people of Gujarat in a better way.
After joining the Congress at its rally near Adalaj village in Gandhinagar district, Hardik in his address asked the gathering if it was the right decision.
To this, the people said, "Yes".
Targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Patel said when the Congress decided to postpone its rally, earlier scheduled for 28 February, following the terror attack in Pulwama last month, the PM was busy addressing gatherings across the country.
The 25-year-old Patidar leader praised Rahul Gandhi, saying the Congress president is "honest".
"People ask me why I chose the Congress and Rahul Gandhi. I chose Rahul Gandhi because he is honest. He does not believe in working like a dictator," he said.
On the BJP's charge of dynastic politics in the Congress, Patel said there was nothing wrong if a politician's son wanted to be join the same field to serve people.
He asked the Congress cadres to get their act together to defeat the BJP in the next month's Lok Sabha polls.
Rahul Attacks Modi on Home Turf with GST, Masood Azhar Swipes
Congress chief Rahul Gandhi attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his 2014 promise of "depositing" Rs 15 lakh in the account of every citizen.
Gandhi also played to the gallery in the business- driven state by claiming that "Gabbar Singh Tax", his oft-repeated jibe for the Goods and Services Tax (GST) was beyond the understanding of traders.
"Gabbar Singh Tax (GST) can't be understood by our traders even today (after its was implemented nationwide last year)," he said.
"Did people get Rs 15 lakh into their bank accounts as promised by Narendra Modi?" he asked at the well-attended rally.
Turning his attention on the Pulwama terror attack and the subsequent air strike by India and the aerial engagement with Pakistan Air Force the next day, Gandhi said it was National Security Adviser Ajit Doval who has sent Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar to freedom in a "special plane".
"Who sent Pulwama terror attack perpetrator Masood Azhar to Pakistan?" he asked the crowd.
"Masood Azhar was sent in a special aircraft and NSA Ajit Doval accompanied him," Gandhi answered his query for the crowd.
The Congress leader, however, did not reveal if he had any proof to substantiate his claim that Doval accompanied Azhar on a special flight.
In the next month's Lok Sabha polls, truth will win and hatred will be defeated, Gandhi said.
LS Election Results Will be Good for Cong Both in Gujarat and in Centre: Rahul Gandhi
Speaking to reporters after the rally, Rahul Gandhi said, “The result (of Lok Sabha Elections 2019) will be very good in Gujarat as well as at the national level. There is anger among people. Government has failed completely in providing employment to the youth of the country.”