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Sharpening his attack on Narendra Modi, Rahul Gandhi today said the BJP leader would have "ousted" even Atal Bihari Vajpayee like party veterans Jaswant Singh and L K Advani had the former PM continued being in public life.
The Congress Vice President took a dig at Modi for his statement at rallies asking voters to make him the "chowkidar" (watchman) of the country, saying the BJP PM candidate was a "chowkidar" only to businessmen and had ousted senior leaders and "brought in Adani".
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"He (Modi) boasts of development in Gujarat but it was not a single man who changed Gujarat. It was the hard work of labourers and farmers who made Gujarat.
"He wants to get the keys (control) of the country in his hands but what happened in Gujarat? People gave him keys but he brought in (businessman) Adani," Gandhi said at a public meeting here.
"A group of Sikh farmers from Gujarat told me that their forefathers migrated from Pakistan to Gujarat and they put in their hard work and efforts to make the land allotted to them fertile.
Now, Gujarat government officials have asked them to leave the state saying they were outsiders, he said, adding the same treatment was meted out to senior leaders in BJP.
"L K Advani and Jaswant Singh were told 'you are outsiders go from here'. If Atal Bihari Vajyapee would be in public life today, he would also be asked the same thing," he said.
Questioning Modi's claims on development of Gujarat, Gandhi again raised the issue of allotment of farmers' land to industrialists.
"45,000 acre land, an area equal to Bikaner, was doled out to a businessman in Gujarat for Rs 300 crore. One rupee for one square meter. This is toffee model because you have a toffee in one rupee. If you are surname is Adani, you can get farmers land at such a rate under toffee model," Gandhi said
He alleged that development for BJP is "development of selected businessman", not for people at large.
"Textile industry has been closed.Farmers lands are being snatched.If you have Rs. 11.50, you are not poor in Gujarat. This is the reality of Gujarat," he said.
Gandhi said that the UPA government empowered the common man and the poor in the last ten years by way of various rights including MGNREGA, RTI and Right to Food, and lashed out at the Gujarat Chief Minister