Rahul Gandhi Dares PM For 15-minute Debate, Slips In "Beti Bachao" Taunt

Rahul Gandhi also targeted the Prime Minister over the recent spate of child rape cases, which evoked fury across the country.

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Rahul Gandhi Dares PM For 15-minute Debate, Slips In 'Beti Bachao' Taunt

Rahul Gandhi said if he spoke about the Rafale issue in the Parliament, PM Modi cannot withstand it


New Delhi: 

Highlights

  1. Rahul Gandhi spoke of farmers, women and corruption
  2. BJP retorts; says Mr Gandhi can't write 15 lines without looking at phone
  3. Rahul Gandhi targeted PM over the recent spate of child rape cases
Congress chief Rahul Gandhi on Monday ripped into Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government, criticising it on multiple issues as he launched his year-long "Save the Constitution campaign". While the programme was seen as an outreach to the Dalit community, the Congress chief spoke of farmers, women, corruption and demanded a 15-minute debate with the Prime Minister in Parliament.

"Modi is afraid to stand in Parliament... If I am allowed to speak for 15 minutes on Rafale issue in Parliament before Modi, he will not be able to withstand it," said the 48-year-old Congress leader, who took charge of the party in December last year.

The BJP was quick to hit back. "Rahul has been saying he wants 15 minutes to talk since 15 days; Here's your answer Rahul Gandhi - a person who cannot write 15 lines without looking at his phone, wants to talk for 15 minutes," said BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra.

The Congress has been long alleging that the deal for 36 Rafale fighter planes with the French government was finalised by PM Modi's government at a higher price than the previous deal for 126 medium multi-role combat aircraft negotiated by the UPA government.

Mr Gandhi also targeted the Prime Minister over the recent spate of child rape cases, which evoked fury across the country.

Earlier, the slogan was "Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao". The new slogan is just Beti Bachao (save the girls). Save them from whom? From the BJP and its MLAs," the Congress chief said. The government, he said, will not save the girls, their parents will have to. "That's the sad reality," he added.

The Congress has repeatedly targeted the government over the rapes of minors in Kathua and Unnao. In the horrific rape and murder of the 8-year-old in Jammu and Kashmir's Kathua, two BJP ministers were forced to step down after they openly supported the accused.

In Unnao, a 16-year-old has accused a BJP lawmaker Kuldeep Singh Sengar, and his brother of raping her. The lawmaker's brother was arrested after the girl's father died days after suffering an assault.

The nationwide furore over the two cases has drawn international attention and Christine Lagarde, the chief of International Monetary Fund or IMF, has commented that Indian authorities should pay more attention to the women in the country.

Referring to her comments, Mr Gandhi said: "Modi doesn't say a word. He went outside India. IMF chief commented how he wasn't helping women, how he was silent and not acting. No PM has been talked to like this in 70 years, be it Nehru, Vajpayee or any other PM. No PM has been talked to like this."

PM Modi, who was had been met by hundreds of protesters as he landed in London last week, broke his silence on the matter, saying "rape is rape" and should not be politicised.

"When a child is raped... we cannot compare these incidents in numbers for different governments. Rape is rape... How can we accept this?" he said during an interaction with the Indian community at at London's iconic Central Hall Westminster.


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