Is Rahul Gandhi’s knowledge about farmers ‘bookish’?
Bhopal, June 9: The war of words between the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress over farmers is not ending anytime soon. The ongoing agrarian crisis in the country which saw suicide of thousands of farmers in the last few years has been politicised by leaders cutting across party lines for their personal gains.
The ongoing 10-day-long farmers' protest in several parts of the country too has been politicised, thanks to the BJP which remains in a denial mode about the farm distress and the Congress trying its best to cash in on the plight of the farmers.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi, who has been regularly making statements in support of the agitating farmers and slamming the Narendra Modi government for its "anti-farmer policies", on Friday, was attacked by a senior farmer leader and BJP MP Virendra Singh.
BJP Kisan Morcha national president Singh "Mast" said that the Congress chief's knowledge about farmers was "bookish". Singh, a Lok Sabha MP from Uttar Pradesh's Bhadohi, also said that those throwing vegetables and pouring milk on the streets as part of a 10-day farmers' stir were not "real farmers" but those executing the "conspiracy" of some "power hungry" people.
Talking to reporters in Indore, Madhya Pradesh Singh said, "Do you see a farmer in the faces of Congress leaders like Rahul Gandhi and Jyotiraditya Scindia? Their information about farmers is bookish."
He added, "These leaders did not spend their childhood in the lap of "maai" (mother) but in the lap of "daai" (babysitter). We know what love for the motherland is."
Gandhi, while participating in the "Kisan Samraddhi Sankalp Rally" in Mandsaur on June 6, had announced that farm loans would be waived within 10 days of the Congress coming to power in Madhya Pradesh.
"It is good that Rahul has learnt to imitate Prime Minister Narendra Modi. During assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh, Modi had promised that the state government would waive off the loans of farmers," Singh said.
He, however, added that Gandhi should not nurture any illusion that the Congress would be back in power in Madhya Pradesh "in this birth".
In reply to a question, the BJP Kisan Morcha chief said, "Those throwing fruits and vegetables and pouring milk on the streets are not real farmers. They are executing the conspiracy of some power hungry people."
Singh said that he was ready to talk with the Rashtriya Kisan Mazdoor Mahasangh chief Shiv Kumar Sharma "Kakkaji" as well as other leaders on the problems facing the agriculture sector.
Singh was in Indore to participate in the farmers support march organised by the BJP. Madhya Pradesh finance Minister Jayant Malaiya and BJP's national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya also took part.
A BJP spokesperson said that this rally was organised in support of the agriculture friendly schemes of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan.
The Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh are scheduled in December this year. Observers say farmers' issues will be one of the main political subjects during the upcoming polls in the state.