Sonia Gandhi spent more than 70 pc of MP funds on minorities: Shah in Raebareli

Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday launched a blistering attack on senior Congress leader Sonia Gandhi, accusing her of "spending more than 70 per cent of her MP funds on minorities" and the Gandhi family of being experts in lying.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah
Union Home Minister Amit Shah

Raebareli/Pratapgarh (UP) | Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday launched a blistering attack on senior Congress leader Sonia Gandhi, accusing her of "spending more than 70 per cent of her MP funds on minorities" and the Gandhi family of being experts in lying.

Rahul Gandhi is fighting the Lok Sabha elections from Raebareli the seat held by his mother Sonia Gandhi for the last two decades. She recently moved to the Rajya Sabha. Rahul Gandhi has also been fielded from Wayanad in Kerala.

Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra addressed a rally in support of her brother Rahul Gandhi in Raebareli and accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of never visiting any village in his Varanasi constituency.

Raebareli will vote in the fifth phase of the Lok Sabha elections on May 20.

Shah also addressed an election rally in Pratapgarh where he said that Rahul Gandhi can be scared of Pakistan's atom bomb but the BJP is not; Pakistan-occupied Kashmir belongs to India and "we will take it". He was referring to Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar's remarks on Pakistan having the atom bomb.

At an election rally in Raebareli, Shah said, "You gave the Gandhi family a chance for years, but no development work has been done ... They (Congress) do not believe in development. They do not even come to you in your happiness and sorrows."

Asking people to vote for BJP candidate Dinesh Pratap Singh, the Union minister said, "We will connect Raebareli with Modiji's development journey."

"The 'shahzada' (prince) has come here to seek votes. You have been voting for many years. Have you received anything from the MP fund? If you have not received it, then where did it go? It went to their vote bank. Sonia Gandhi has spent more than 70 per cent of the MP funds on minorities," Shah claimed.

MP fund refers to the Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme under which MPs can recommend development programmes involving expenditure of Rs 5 crore each year in their constituencies.

Intensifying his attack, he said, "This Gandhi family is an expert in lying. They are now promising Rs 1 lakh for every woman. In the Telangana (assembly) elections, they had said that they would give Rs 15,000 to every woman. The women of the state elected them (Congress) ... Forget about Rs 15,000, they did not even give Rs 1,500."

"Many people here told me that this is a family seat... It is true. The people of Raebareli have made the Gandhi and Nehru families win for years. But after getting elected from here, how many times did Sonia Ji and her family come to Raebareli? Okay, Sonia ji's health is not good, but has Rahul baba or sister Priyanka come?"

After the rally, Shah visited the residence of Samajwadi Party MLA from Unchahar Manoj Pandey, who on February 27 resigned from the post of the party's chief whip and cross-voted in favour of the BJP candidate in the Rajya Sabha polls.

In Pratapgarh, Shah said, "Mani Shankar Aiyar of the Congress, and INDI Alliance leader Farooq Abdullah said Pakistan should be respected because they have the atom bomb and don't demand Pak Occupied Kashmir. Today, I want to ask... is POK not a part of India? Rahul baba, if you want to be scared of the atom bomb, be scared, we are not scared. Pakistan-occupied Kashmir belongs to India and we will take it."

In a video, Aiyar has been heard saying that India should give respect to Pakistan as it is a sovereign nation and engage with it as it also possesses the atom bomb. He indicated in the video that if a "mad person" comes to power there and uses the atomic bomb, it will not be good and will have its effect here too.

While Aiyar said the video was old and dredged up now as the BJP's election campaign is faltering, the Congress said it totally disagreed with the remarks made by Aiyar some months ago.

"Every child of Kaushambi is willing to lay down his life for Kashmir. The Congress, Samajwadi Party and the BSP were taking care of Article 370 as their 'illegitimate child'. You made Modi ji prime minister for the second time and he scrapped Article 370, worked to end terrorism in Kashmir and make it an integral part of India," Shah told the rally.

"But these two princes... Akhilesh (Yadav) and Rahul Baba say that if they come (to power), they will bring back Article 370," he claimed.

Asserting that the opposition INDIA black has no chance of winning the Lok Sabha election, the senior BJP leader said, "Assuming that they do, who will be the prime minister?"

"When a reporter asked this, the answer was a one-year term on a rotational basis. Rahul baba, this is not a grocery shop," Shah said.

Referring to the construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya, he said that for 70 years, the Congress, SP and BSP kept the issue hanging. "Modi ji did 'bhoomipujan', and on January 22 he did the consecration," Shah said.

The Union home minister claimed that opposition leaders, including Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, Samajwadi party chief Akhilesh Yadav and his wife Dimple Yadav, were invited to the consecration event at the Ram temple.

"But these people did not go, because they are afraid of their vote bank.

But the BJP is not afraid of vote bank. Not only Ram temple, Modi ji also built Baba Vishwanath's Darbar (in Varanasi) which was destroyed by Aurangzeb. Somnath temple is also being built of gold. Modi ji has worked to redecorate our places of worship," he said.

Shah said that this time, the people of Kaushambi would have to ensure three hattricks.

"First is to make Narendra Modi the prime minister for the third time. The second hattrick in UP is to completely wipe off the SP, BSP and Congress for the third time and the third hattrick is to make my friend (Vinod) Sonkar the MP for the third time," he said.

Polling in Kaushambi (SC) Lok Sabha seat too will be held in the fifth phase on May 20. INDIA bloc constituent Samajwadi Party's Pushpendra Saroj is the main challenger to the BJP in this seat.

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