Smriti Irani responds to Rahul Gandhi: Union Minister Smriti Irani on Tuesday launched a no holds barred attack on Congress leader Rahul Gandhi after he charged that the Modi government was trying to sell India’s assets built over the last 70 years with its just-launched National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP). Irani referred to a 2008 project and questioned the former Congress president whether the government-controlled by her mother Sonia Gandhi had the ‘power’ to ‘sell’ the country.
“In 2008, an RFP with reference to the New Delhi railway station was announced when the Congress government was at the Centre. Is Rahul Gandhi alleging that the government headed by his mother was audacious enough to sell the country,” Irani, Union Minister for Women and Child Development said.
Irani, who represents UP’s Amethi constituency in Lok Sabha, went on to associate Rahul Gandhi’s politics with ‘hypocrisy’ and ‘arrogance’.
“Does Rahul Gandhi believe that state govts doing such monetisation under Congress leadership are selling their states? There is a saying- This man’s politics begin from hypocrisy, is sustained through arrogance & ends with contempt,” she said.
“Congress govt in Maharashtra raised Rs 8,000 crores by monetising Mumbai-Pune expressway. Is Rahul Gandhi alleging that the Maharashtra govt sold the expressway?” Irani asked.
Commenting on is Cabinet colleague Narayan Rane’s arrest in Maharashtra earlier in the day, Smriti Irani said that the action by the state government shows the desperation of the Shiv Sena and Uddhav Thackeray government.
“What happened in Maharashtra is against all norms, not only of decency of protocol, but also law. This is the depths to which depravity will now be politically exhibited in Maharashtra. It’s a sad day in our constitutional history,” Irani said.
Earlier, Rahul Gandhi accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of bringing the process of selling the ‘crown jewel’ assets built by his party in last 70 years. He also contended that the Congress is not opposing the privatisation process but “the entire NMP is designed to create a monopoly”.
Addressing a press conference at the party headquarters along with former Finance Minister P Chidamabaram, Rahul Gandhi said: “The Prime Minister and the BJP said that the Congress had done nothing in last 70 years. There is a list here of all the assets that the Congress has helped build using the public money.”