Terrorists have no religion: Sonia Gandhi

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Nanded, Oct 7 (UNI) Expressing concern over the incidents of bomb blasts in different parts of the country, Congress president and United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi today said terrorists had no religion, no caste.

''We should all stand united against terrorism,'' she appealed to the people, while addressing a huge rally here after inaugurating the newly-constructed ghat on the banks of Godavari river for holy dip of devotees on the occasion of tercentenary of the holy Granth Sahib's 'Guru-di-Gaddi'.

Over a lakh people heard her in rapt attention as she spoke about the menace of terrorism.

Lauding the sacrifices made by Guru Gobind Singhji for the uplift of the downtrodden and the poor, Sonia spoke about adhering to the mantra of social integrity, compassion, fraternity and peace.

Elaborating the various development schemes launched by late Prime ministers Pandit Jawharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi for development of the nation and generations to come, she stressed the need to continue the progress for the uplift of the discarded, tribal people, minorities and the women.

Sonia also apprised the gathering about the schemes initiated by the UPA Government, including the Employment Guarantee Scheme, the Jawharlal Nehru Urban Development Scheme (JNNRU) and loan waiver for farmers to tune to Rs 6,600 crore. The Nuclear Agreement with America will benefit various developmental works, she added.

Sonia exhorted the people to involve themselves in the continuous and sincere efforts for the development of the nation.

Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil, the state in-charge of the Congress Margaret Alwa, chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh and MPCC chief Manikrao Thackeray were present on the occasion.

At the outset, Industry Minister and the Guardian minister Ashok Chavan felicitated the guests.

Mr Patil underlined the guidance rendered by Ms Gandhi to the partymen and her efforts for progress of the nation. He was confident that the Congress will emerge as the single largest party in the next general elections.

Mr Deshmukh said the progress of Marathwada in the field of irrigation, education and health could be achieved only because of the co-operation offered by Sonia.

Nanded has turned into one of the beautiful cities in the state due to the present accomplished works, he said adding the roads had been widened and the airport and Railway station have been given a new look.

Mr Chavan spoke about the developmental works done for the celebration of Guru-di-Gaddi function in the city and thanked Sonia for her efforts in making available from the Centre an amount of Rs 2,000 crore.

Sonia, during her visit, had a look at the different works carried out in the city to make it a landmark place in Marathwada district of Maharashtra.

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