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Nadda, Rahul spar over farm reform laws, APMC, China

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on January 19, 2021

Rahul Gandhi   -  Kamal Narang

JP Nadda   -  THE HINDU

Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi charged that the Centre wants to destroy the agriculture system in the country and hand it over to three or four crony capitalists. He said the three farm reform laws are designed with this motive.

The BJP retorted that the Nehru scion is trying to mislead people and said his real intention is to ensure that the farmers continue their protests along the borders of Delhi.

Talking to reporters at the AICC headquarters, here on Tuesday, Gandhi said he supports the protests and added that the farmers’ fight is for every citizen. He added that there is a tragedy unfolding in this country and the Centre wants to ignore this tragedy and misinform people about it. He said the tragedy is about the future of this country and its ability to find jobs for the youth here. “I support the protesting farmers 100 per cent and every single person in the country should support them as they are fighting for us,” he said.

When asked about the solution, for the problem of farmers, he said repealing of the three laws is the only solution.

‘Monopolies emerging’

“What we are watching is the development of massive monopolies in this country. What do I mean, I mean that 3-4-5 people are now owning this country. This country is now owned by a limited small group of people, who, I term as crony capitalists, who have a close relationship with the Prime Minister and who provide the Prime Minister with media support,” he said.

The three farm laws will destroy the mandi system, he said. “Three or four businessmen will be able to store millions and millions of tonnes of wheat, rice other essential commodities and then the middle class will be paying prices that they have never imagined.

The food grains we buy come to you at the rate it comes because of the APMC, because of the agriculture system, because of the structure, so, this is not an assault on the farmers, this is an assault on the middle class and this is an assault on every single youngster in this country, who is not going to be able to get a job,” he said and urged youngsters to realise that their independence is being taken away.

He said he will take up the issues of people without fear as the BJP cannot touch him on anything.

“I am not afraid of anyone, neither of (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi nor of anyone else. I am a clean person, they can’t touch me. They can shoot me, but can’t touch me. I am a patriot and I protect my country, and I will keep doing it,” he said.

BJP hits back

BJP president Nadda maintained through a series of tweets that Gandhi was misleading people on the issue of the farm laws and Chinese transgression. “When will Rahul Gandhi, his dynasty and Congress stop lying on China? Can he deny that thousands of kilometres, including the one in Arunachal Pradesh he is referring to was gifted by none other than Pandit Nehru to the Chinese? Time and again, why does Congress surrender to China?” he asked.

He asked when will the Congress stop provoking and misleading farmers of India. “Why did UPA stall the Swaminathan Commission report for years and did not increase the MSP? Why did farmers remain poor for decades under Congress Governments? Does he feel sympathy for farmers only in opposition? Rahul Gandhi has been spreading lies that all APMC Mandis will be closed down. But wasn’t action against the APMC Act a part of Congress manifesto? Would that not have closed down mandis?” Nadda asked.

Published on January 19, 2021

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