Ahead of the upcoming Gujarat Assembly polls, senior Congress official P Chidambaram on Tuesday claimed that the state was ‘governed from Delhi’ and that is why he has seen three chief ministers in the past six last years.
The assertion of a “twin-powered” government is “empty boasting”, he said.
Mr Chidambaram, who was in the city of Ahmedabad, Gujarat, campaigning for his party, also denounced the ruling BJP for its “arrogance”, saying no one had so far apologized or had resigned for the tragedy of the collapse of the Morbi bridge which left 135 dead.
The Gujarat Assembly polls will be held in two phases on December 1 and 5 and the counting of votes will begin on December 8.
Addressing a press conference, Mr Chidambaram claimed that ‘Gujarat is governed from Delhi, not from Ahmedabad’ and that is why the state has seen three chief ministers in the past six years .
“The boast of a two-engine government is an empty boast. Gujarat is a one-ox cart plodding along a mud road leaving behind large sections of the population, especially Scheduled Tribes, women , the young and the poor,” he said. further claimed.
On October 30, a suspension bridge over the Machchuu River in Morbi district in Gujarat collapsed, killing 135 people.
“To my knowledge, no one has apologized or resigned for such a great tragedy. If such a thing had happened in a foreign country, there would have been immediate resignations. There is a complete absence of responsibility for the Morbi tragedy,” said Mr. Chidambaram.
“They didn’t apologize because the government here thinks they will easily win the next election and they don’t need to be responsible for the incident. The BJP government and its leaders believe that they don’t are not responsible or accountable because the BJP sits on top of arrogance,” he said.
He called on the people of Gujarat to change the BJP government and give Congress a chance this time.
“In all mature parliamentary democracies, people change governments from time to time. Every few years or terms, you have to change governments,” the congressional veteran said.
Why are social indicators, such as health and education, high in states like Kerala and Tamil Nadu? Because governments are changed once every five or ten years, he added.
“My appeal to the people of Gujarat is to change your government. Assert your democratic right. Establish the principle of parliamentary democracy. Governments must be changed from time to time. This time vote for the Congress party. Because you know our track record. We can do better and we will do better than the BJP,” Chidambaram said.
When asked if he thought central investigative agencies like the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) were being misused, Mr Chidambaram said “that ‘they are the servants of the BJP’.
“Ninety-five percent of all cases and arrests made by the ED and CBI are of opposition leaders. Anyone who joins the BJP, all cases against them are closed and their alleged sins expunged,” he added.
On the issue of BJP-led states announcing the formation of committees to implement the Uniform Civil Code (UCC), the Congress leader said, “Even a child knows that states cannot implement it, that can be done by Parliament.
Asked about his views on the future of Indian economy, the former Union finance minister said that India will not go into recession like European countries or the United States, but that growth will slow.
“Growth will be a far cry from the rosy picture painted by the finance minister and chief economic adviser. Growth will slow for several reasons – first, investment will slow. Second, exports will slow. the rupee will eat away at people’s incomes, so consumption will slow down,” he said.
(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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