Dhar, Nov 6 (PTI) Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Monday said GST and demonetisation had severely distressed small traders and other citizens and urged them to raise their awareness levels about her party's promises and their implementation before voting in the upcoming Assembly polls.
Addressing a rally in Kukshi town in tribal-dominated Dhar in Madhya Pradesh, where Assembly polls will be held on November 17, she slammed the Narenda Modi government for its economic policies, including privatisation of state-run units to benefit industrialists.
"The (Union) government has closed public sector industries, which resulted in high unemployment. They then introduced demonetisation and the Goods and Services Tax. GST has troubled everybody, including small traders. It has resulted in inflation," she said.
"GST is applicable on everything because of which small traders face a lot of problems. It has resulted in high inflation and unemployment. People have to pay GST on everything, even on small things during festivals, which results in inflation," she claimed.
Attacking the Centre, Gandhi alleged public sector firms were being given to industrialists free of cost, be it BHEL (power sector major Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited), railways, airports, ports etc, which was causing unemployment in the country.
Pointing out to the rising prices of onions, Gandhi told the crowd at one time Prime Minister Modi would mock whether (batting legend) Sachin (Tendulkar) would score a century first or onions (scaling the Rs 100 per kilogram mark).
"Now both Virat (Kohli who scored a ton in Sunday's World Cup game against South Africa) and onions have scored centuries. What do you have to say now," she said in a jibe at the PM.
Attacking the prime minister further, Gandhi claimed he uses two aircraft cumulatively worth Rs 16,000 crore for travel and wears expensive suits.
While farmers are earning just Rs 27 per day, industrialist Gautam Adani was making Rs 1,600 crore per day "with the help of the government", she alleged.
Her attack on the PM came some days after she received a notice from the Election Commission of India for her remarks at a rally that an envelop given by Modi to a temple contained just Rs 21 as donation. At the time, she had claimed she had seen the news on television and didn't know if it was true or not.
"Adaniji is making Rs 1600 crore daily while a farmer is earning just Rs 27 per day. Adaniji is earning Rs 1600 crore per day with the help of the government," she alleged.
"Modiji wears suits worth lakhs of rupees. He has bought to planes each worth Rs 8,000 crore. You (Modi) have spent Rs 20,000 crore for what, to renew and beautify the Parliament (an apparent reference to the new Parliament complex)? The Parliament was running fine for the last 70 years. In case there was need for repair, it should have been carried out," she said.
The Union government is constructing tall buildings but then says it does not have money to pay dues of farmers or write off their loans, Gandhi said at the rally.
Gandhi said the government had reduced the prices of LPG cylinders due to upcoming Assembly polls, and asked why they could not do it earlier despite being in power for the last 18 years.
The Shivraj Singh Chouhan government made more than 22,000 announcements during its long rule but have they fulfilled even 22 of them, she asked.
Gandhi asked people to raise their awareness levels before voting and see for themselves whether Congress governments in other states had implemented poll guarantees like providing Rs 1,500 per month to women, cylinders at Rs 500 and resumption of Old Pension Scheme.
She asked the crowd to vote for the Congress in the upcoming Assembly polls after making sure for themselves about these promises.
Votes will be counted in Madhya Pradesh on December 3. PTI MAS LAL GK BNM BNM