Congress to Counter Polarisation Politics with ‘40% Cut’ Charge, Free Power Promise in Karnataka

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Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandh,i addressing women's convention, said, "I don't want to criticise the BJP. But I want to ask just one question. In the last few years of BJP rule, has your life become better? Elections are going to be held in a few months. Evaluate yourself. Has the BJP government cared for you."

NEW DELHI — The Congress is trying hard in Karnataka to talk about the issues of development and corruption and not to fall in the polarisation trap of the BJP as the party is pushing it’s election agenda and talking of the ’40 per cent cut’ issue which has been haunting the BJP.

The party has appointed a senior leader from a different state to oversee the election preparations in each Lok Sabha constituency while state in-charge Randeep Singh Surjewala is devoting more time to the state and trying to bridge differences between senior leaders of the party and push the party’s agenda. Surjewala has been consistent in talking about the corruption issue and that there is one scam a day in the Bommai government.

The party has also raised the issue of water disputes with other states which is an emotive issue. The party organised a Mahadayi Water Rally in Hubli and said it will smoothen the way for Mahadayi water for the drinking water needs of Belagavi, Hubli and Dharwad.

“The Congress conceived and started the Mahadayi project. The Congress constituted a Mahadayi Tribunal in 2010 and the award came in 2018. The Congress will get the Mahadayi water,” Surjewala said.

The party has also spoken about income guarantee and its leader Priyanka Gandhi declared at a recent rally: “Defeat BJP-made price rise!”

Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi had announced that if the party is voted to power in the state, Rs 2,000 would be given to every woman household head in Karnataka under the ‘Gruhalakshmi’ scheme.

She had launched a full-fledged attack on the BJP government in Karnataka by stating that the situation in the state is ‘shameful’.

Addressing a women’s convention — ‘Na Nayaki’ — this week, Priyanka said that she was told that the situation is shameful in Karnataka.

“Crime against women is high and 40 cases of such crimes are taking place every day. The government is also creating a controversy over the school syllabus,” she said.

“I don’t want to criticise the BJP. But I want to ask just one question. In the last few years of BJP rule, has your life become better? Elections are going to be held in a few months. Evaluate yourself. Has the BJP government cared for you,” Priyanka asked.

Addressing the large gathering of women, she said, “Only you can change the situation. Is it not time for you to make a change? What is it that you want? Education, jobs, career, freedom of choice and right of choice. Who is going to give these to you? The Congress party would deliver them,” she added.

The party is talking about corruption and charged that Rs 1.5 lakh crore has been looted.

The Congress is cautious not to get involved in the polarisation game of the BJP as the central agencies are cracking down on the PFI. The party is trying to sidestep these issues but it also cautioned the minorities after Prime Minister Narendra Modi called for a mega outreach programme.

BK Hariprasad, Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Council says, “The Prime Minister telling his party leaders to take Muslims into confidence is like the devil quoting scriptures. Ahead of the elections, the BJP wants to go for such gimmicks but the people are not ready to accept this.”

The Congress is also promising free electricity as its leader DK Shivakumar promised 200 units of free electricity to every household if elected in the 2023 assembly polls.

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai understanding the promise said: “The Congress leader’s statement shows his frustration and this has given a feeling that Shivakumar doesn’t have the intention of implementing it. The Congress party wants to win the election by making false promises.”

With the assembly polls due to be held in the first half of this year, political activity is heating up. In this context, the Congress had launched a bus yatra from Belagavi. — IANS

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