Cong to highlight unemployment, inflation and rich-poor gap during 'Haath Se Haath Jodo' campaign: Maken

NewsDrum Desk
25 Jan 2023

Mumbai, Jan 25 (PTI) Senior Congress leader Ajay Maken on Wednesday said his party will undertake a nationwide 'Haath Se Haath Jodo' campaign to highlight prevailing issues like unemployment, inflation and the "widening gap" between the rich and the poor in the country.

This campaign will be launched after the ongoing 'Bharat Jodo Yatra' led by party leader Rahul Gandhi culminates in Srinagar on January 30, he said in a press conference at the Mumbai Pradesh Congress office here.

Maken along with Congress's Mumbai unit chief Bhai Jagtap unveiled a "charge-sheet" against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led central government with the title "Bharatiya Jumla Party".

Last week, senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh had announced that the party will launch the 'Haath Se Haath Jodo', a two-month-long door-to-door campaign across the country to spread Rahul Gandhi's message among the masses.

Maken said, "The 'Haath Se Haath Jodo' campaign will highlight the issues of unemployment, price rise and the increasing gap between the poor and the rich. We will highlight these issues among people. Our 'charge-sheet' will be distributed to every household along with the copy of Rahul Gandhi's letter addressing fellow Indians." This charge-sheet will be in Hindi, English and Marathi languages, he said.

The Bharat Jodo Yatra will end in Jammu and Kashmir after flag-hoisting on January 30. Thereafter, as a next step, the nationwide 'Haath Se Haath Jodo' campaign will be undertaken, Maken added.

Unemployment in the private sector is rising. In the government sector, there are 62 lakh vacancies, including 2.66 lakh in railways, 2 lakh in banks, 3.30 lakh in health care sector and anganwadis. Besides, there are 9.10 lakh vacancies in the central government departments and 2.55 lakh vacancies in the Army, the Congress general secretary said.

At present, there are 48 crore unemployed people in the country, he added.

"The gap between the poor and rich is rising. In our country, the poor are becoming poorer, while the rich are becoming richer," Maken said, adding that the 100 top businessmen in the country earned Rs 13 lakh crore during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The labour force participation rate, which was 47 per cent in 2016, dropped to 39 per cent in 2022, he said.

India was at the 55th position in Global Hunger Index (GHI) during the erstwhile Congress-led government's rule. But it has now slipped to 101st position out of the total 116 countries, the Congress leader said.

The household gas cylinder rates have crossed the Rs 1,000-mark from Rs 410 during the UPA rule, he said, adding the price of commercial gas cylinders is even higher.

"People have to pay Goods and Services Tax (GST) on everything. The burden is increasing on the common man and the poor people," he said.

Replying to a query, Maken said the number of government vacancies lying vacant is the highest today, and it has nothing to do with the global recession.

"Global recession was there even during the Manmohan Singh government in 2007-08, but we did not let it affect the people of our country," he said.

When asked about the outcome of the Bharat Jodo Yatra, he said lakhs of people participated in the march. "People from every walk of life have been welcoming it," he said.

Bhai Jagtap said the party will include information about the road scam in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) in the 'charge-sheet'.

He slammed PM Modi, claiming that he spent Rs 10,000 crore on his own image-building. PTI KK NP NP

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