Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday alleged Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave preferential treatment to businessmen while ignoring farmers. Addressing an election rally in Haryana's Nuh, he called PM Modi a "loudspeaker" of industrialists, adding he is only seen with people like "Trump and Ambani" and not with farmers.
Mr Gandhi, a former Congress president, has been attacking PM Modi with allegations of corruption and crony capitalism. While campaigning for the national election earlier this year, Mr Gandhi had alleged that industrialist Anil Ambani is one of the biggest beneficiaries of being close to PM Modi. He had claimed Mr Ambani's Reliance Defence bagged an offset contract of the Rafale jet deal after PM Modi's intervention.
"Narendra Modi is the loudspeaker of Ambani and Adani as he only talks about them all day," Mr Gandhi was quoted by news agency PTI as saying.
"You will see Narendra Modi only with Trump and Ambani, but you will never see him with farmers," he added.
Mr Gandhi was apparently referring to the 'Howdy, Modi!' event in Houston last month, where PM Modi and US President Donald Trump shared a stage and addressed over 50,000 members of the Indian-American community.
"Narendra Modi and Khattar (Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar) are taking away your money and giving it to their 15 rich friends," he added.
Mr Gandhi, who had resigned as the Congress president in May over his party's crushing defeat in the national election, made his first public appearance in months on Sunday. Addressing a series of election rallies in Maharashtra, he attacked the centre over a host of issues including economic slowdown, unemployment and farm distress. He also made a reference to the Rafale deal, his main poll issue during the Lok Sabha polls.
"There has been some guilt in the minds of BJP leaders that they have made a mistake in the Rafale deal. Even defence officials had claimed that PM Narendra Modi is interfering in the Rafale fighter jet deal. No one can run away from this truth, neither Narendra Modi, nor Amit Shah or the BJP," he said in Mumbai on Sunday.
Elections in Haryana and Maharashtra are scheduled for October 21, with results due on October 24.
Disclaimer: NDTV has been sued for 10,000 crores by Anil Ambani's Reliance Group for its coverage of the Rafale deal
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