'Rahul repeated what Punjab govt's affidavit had said'

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New Delhi, Oct 12: The Congress here on Friday defended Rahul Gandhi's controversial statement made on Thursday that seven out of 10 young people in Punjab are drug addicts and also sought an apology from the Shiromani Akali Dal-BJP alliance government for attacking the Congress leader.

Party spokesperson Manish Tewari, an MP from the state, quoted from an affidavit which was filed by the Punjab government in the court saying that 70 per cent of Punjabi youth abuse narcotics. The Congress leader said the current alliance government had filed the affidavit.

The Punjab Deputy Chief Minister, Sukhbir Singh Badal, called Rahul Gandhi a 'national joke' for his statement made on the drug addiction. Hitting back at the Punjab government, Tewari said if the latter's affidavit had quoted the same, then why was it criticising Rahul Gandhi? He slammed Badal, saying the latter used an undignified language.

He added that the Akali government, known for their classic sense of ignorance and arrogance, behaved in the typical manner. According to Tewari, the Akali Dal should thank Rahul Gandhi for bringing to the fore such an important issue and try to save the young generation.

Rahul Gandhi was in Punjab where he met party leaders, elected representatives and university students. He said at a rally in Punjab University that a foreign diplomat had told him the 21st century will be India's because of its young population and human resources. In this context, he asked what was happening with Punjab's human resources for seven out of its 10 youth were drug addicts.

He also alleged that the state government was not providing enough opportunity to the state's youth.

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