On Friday, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi reached out to the fishing community in Porbandar and attacked at Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying that his selective industrialist friends were polluting the sea off Gujarat coast, which was impacting the fisherman and pushing them to venture deeper into the sea for a better catch.
The 47-year-old Congress vice-president also assured the fishing community that if Congress came to power they would have a separate ministry for fisheries and open doors of chief minister’s office for the common man. It was Gandhi’s first visit after the announcement of candidates for the first phase of assembly polls that is scheduled for December 9. Porbandar is unarguably one of the biggest fishing communities in Gujarat where Congress’ Arjun Modhwadia is standing against sitting BJP MLA and minister Babu Bokhiriya from Porbandar seat.
“PM Modi gave Rs 33,000 crore for Tata Nano plant but he didn’t give Rs 300 crore subsidy for the purchase of diesel to fishermen, who are yearning for a good education for their children. Have you got jobs at Tata Nano plant? Why 50 lakh people are unemployed in Gujarat?” the Congress VP said. Bringing up the issue of diesel subsidy, Gandhi asked “Do you get diesel subsidy regularly?” to which the crowd replied with “no” in the chorus. Faulting Modi government favoring selective industrialists, Gandhi said that “Last year, PM himself waved off Rs 1.30 lakh crore loan of 10 big industrialists and in near future, he plans to wave off Rs 6 lakh crore”.
“For the past two decades, the voice of only a few industrialists is heard in the state assembly. They wanted land, your land was snatched away, they wanted electricity, your share of electricity was given to them, and they have been allowed to pollute your environment,” the 47-year-old Congress leader added. “In our government doors of assembly and chief minister office will always be open for you,” said Gandhi, showing his confidence that his party will form a government in Gujarat. Doing a remark at the education system in Gujarat, Gandhi said that fishermen also dream of good education for their children but their dreams are ruined because almost 90% colleges have been privatized.