Bhawanipatna: Congress president Rahul Gandhi accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik of ‘snatching’ tribal land and asserted his party will work for protecting the rights of the community while addressing a rally here, Wednesday.
Rahul said the BJP-led government at the Centre and the BJD dispensation in the state have ‘failed to work’ for the welfare of the dalits, tribals, farmers and the poor.
“The Congress is the only party committed to safeguarding the land of tribals. We will protect the rights of tribals in Odisha and elsewhere,” Rahul asserted.
This was Rahul’s second visit within 10 days in Odisha where Assembly and Lok Sabha polls are scheduled to be held together. Rahul had earlier addressed a rally at Bhubaneswar, January 25.
In stinging attacks to both the BJP and the BJD, Rahul said said the two parties are working for the ‘benefit of their industrialist friends’ while ‘neglecting’ the farmers and poor people. The Modi government readily waived Rs 3.5 lakh crore loans of 15 industrialists, but refused to waive farm loans, he alleged.
Despite its promise, the BJP-led government has ‘failed’ to provide remunerative prices to farmers for their produce in order to mitigate their plight, the Congress president alleged.
Rahul also said Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik has failed to work for the benefit of farmers in the state. He also accused the ‘Chowkidar’ (PM) of being ‘corrupt’ and charged Naveen with being ‘remote controlled’ for chit fund scams.
The Congress has decided that land acquired for setting up industries would be returned to the farmers if projects fail to take off within a period of five years of land acquisition, Rahul told the gathering here.