“Normally election manifestoes of political parties are being made behind closed doors. So the Congress party has initiated a process to incorporate common people’s opinion in our political manifesto. We want to get the opinion of the common people, women, youth and others in our manifesto and we have made a team to do so. The manifesto of Congress party will be a manifesto of the aam aadmi and we will implement it” said Rahul Gandhi.
Before starting my speech let me tell you one thing. Normally election manifestoes of political parties are being made behind closed doors. So the Congress party has initiated a process to incorporate common people’s opinion in our political manifesto. We want to get the opinion of the common people, women, youth and others in our manifesto and we have made a team to do so. The manifesto of Congress party will be a manifesto of the aam aadmi and we will implement it.
I see huge amount of enthusiasm in you. During my last speeches in Madhya Pradesh I had talked about my mother and the incident of her falling sick during the debate of Food Security Bill in the Parliament. Normally people do not talk about such personal things during election time. When I went back to Delhi, my mother asked me why I talked about her in a public speech. She told me not talk to talk about her in future and told me to talk about myself, instead. So today I want to do that; talking about myself.
Wherever I go, I talk about development, riots and other matters, but normally do not talk anything personal. Two of my family members were killed by terrorists – my grand mother and my father. I was just 14 years when my grandma was assassinated.
My grandma was my protector when I was a kid. My father was very strict and we were scared of him. For me, it was my grandmother, who used to protect me on many occasions.. For example, I did not like palak sabji. But my father used to put the dish in front of me and I am supposed to have it. What my grandmother used to do was, she would spread open the news paper in front of my father, blocking his vision from me. I used to shift the palak sabji from my plate to grandma’s using the opportunity. That was my relation with my grandma’ she always gave me shelter.
There were cases of terrorism during those days. People of Punjab were angry. My grandma was evicted from her house after she lost elections in 1977. We stayed in a house of my grandma’s friend. Sometimes, in our political system, one loses everything if they lose an election.
I used to see lots of Sikhs in 1977. I could see them with my grandma too. I can also talk about Satwant Singh, Beant Singh. They were my friends. They taught me how to play badminton. They also helped me in my warm up exercises. In fact I had trusted them. They were angry and one day that anger tempted them to kill my grandma. I also was angry.
I still remember, I was in school and was in a geography class. Someone from my house came to my school and wanted to take me back home. When I telephoned to my house, I heard the servant maid was screaming. I asked whether there is anything wrong with my parents. She said everything alright with them. Then asked about my grandmother and without saying anything she put the phone down. I felt terribly worried. It was like my heart had been torn apart.
When I reached home, I saw blood of grandma at one room and the blood of my ‘friends’ in other room. I was angry with my said ‘friends’ Beant Singh and Satwant Singh for a long time. It took me long – about 10-15 years- to free myself from that anger. My anger came down as I later understood that those people were blind with anger.
Why I am telling you this now, you may wonder. No one gets angry so easily. In fact people provoke them and make them angry. I had gone to Muzaffarnagar. I interacted with both Muslims and Hindus. I could see myself in them. I was seeing my face in their tears because I am also a victim of terrorism. Today, lakhs of people are affected by the menace of terrorism.
I was talking to an intelligent officer recently and he told me that some of the victims of Muzaffarnagar riots want to go to Pakistan as they are angry. He said he wanted to talk to them to console them. Some people incited violence and then ask why there is violence. People provoke the people and make them angry. That is the root cause of terrorism. Our opposition party does just one thing – incites anger among the people and make them fight each other. Once riots take place and people die, they just vanish. That is what we saw in Muzaffarnagar and Mumbai.
Why do such things happen? They spread hatred for their narrow political gains. I suffered it twice. We cannot develop with anger; development possible only if there is brotherhood and love. I am told that it was Shekhawat ji’s birthday. I pay respect to him because after all he was an Indian and was a good leader. If we want to progress, we must stay united. We must fight together , win together and in case we have to die, we must die together.
Unity is our strength and if we stay united no force in the earth can beat us.
Now I want to tell you something about Rajasthan and Gehlot Ji. Just now one citizen approached Gehlot Ji and thanked him for his pension scheme for old citizens. I want to inform Gehlot Ji that the free-medicine scheme initiated by the Congress government in Rajasthan will be implemented across the country.
Women get worried if their children do not get sufficient food. The youth get angry if they fail to secure a job. We understand it. That is why we initiated granting rights to the people like Right to Job, Right to Information and Right to food. We gave right to job to address the issue of unemployment. Historic Food Security Bill ensures you food grain at Rs. 1 per kg. We enacted this law to eradicate hunger from our country.
Every young person in our country is worried when he could secure a job. I have an answer for that. Our government have started building rail and industrial corridors across the country. This will grant huge job opportunities to the people. There will be more and more industries come up in these corridors.
We are fighting for the people’s rights. If Congress forms a government, that will be a government of weaker sections, poor and the youth. That will not be a government of industrialists. We need industrialists and there is a need to join hands with them for development. We need to build a partnership between the common people and the industrialists to take our country forward.
Such a partnership must benefit both the parties. It must not harm the poor. Their lands should not be acquired forcibly or for cheaper prices. That is why we have enacted Land Acquisition Bill. No one can acquire poor people’s lands easily or forcibly. They can acquire lands only with the consent of the land owners and after paying the adequate price – four times than the market price. This will benefit everyone without any discrimination. Even the labourers working in the lands will have the benefit.
We must effectively use the power of the youth. We need to reform the existing political system. Today the doors of our system are closed for the common people and all decisions are being taken by a handful of people in all parties. The voice of the women, the youth and aam aadmi must be heard by the political system.
BJP wants to spread hatred and make people fight each other. Such ideology is harmful and pains all section of the people. But Congress party believes in inclusive growth. We take everyone along with us. We built more roads than NDA. Terrorism came down sharply under Congress rule than NDA regime. We will continue our efforts and will take our country forward.
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