Modi, Chouhan, ED, CBI, IT dept are `panch Pandav': Kharge

Modi, Chouhan, ED, CBI, IT dept are `panch Pandav': Kharge

Gwalior, Nov 7 (PTI) Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge on Tuesday said the three central agencies of the ED, CBI and Income Tax along with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan were 'panch Pandav' against whom his party was fighting.

The central agencies were in the fray on the Bharatiya Janata Party's behalf, he said at a public meeting here while campaigning for the November 17 elections in Madhya Pradesh.

“Congress has one candidate (per constituency), but the BJP has four. There is a (party) candidate who is visible, but there are three others who are invisible....ED, which is campaigning like a star campaigner, like Prime Minister Narendra Modi does. A second candidate is the CBI, which also goes after the (rival) candidates to weaken them, and a third is the Income Tax,” Kharge said.

“Besides these three, there are Modi and Chouhan....they are like `panch Pandav', not of the old times but of today's, who are trying to defeat us,” the Congress leader said.

“But we have to teach them a lesson,” Kharge said.

With elections taking place in Congress-ruled Chhattisgarh, the ED was harassing the party's leaders there and threatening chief minister Bhupesh Baghel, he alleged.

'This is not a democratic way and not a level-playing field, but this threatening and intimidating is going on,” he said.

Last week the ED claimed it had recorded the statement of a 'cash courier' who alleged that the promoters of the Mahadev betting app paid Rs 508 crore to Baghel, and it was a ''subject matter of investigation''.

Slamming BJP leaders for asking what Congress did for the country, Kharge said, “The Congress has saved the country and its Constitution, because of which they become chief minister. These BJP leaders have not fought for the country's democracy and independence but sided with the British. If we had not made efforts, the country's picture could have been different.” Congress leaders Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi sacrificed their lives for the country, he said.

The ruling BJP in Madhya Pradesh was 'number one in corruption, farmer suicides, crime against women, malnutrition and unemployment' and the Congress will bring about a change, Kharge said.

“They were in power for the last 18 years in Madhya Pradesh and for ten years in the country and called themselves a double-engine government, but they could not solve the problems of the people of the state,” he said.

Talking about the Congress's various 'guarantees' (poll promises), he said it will conduct a caste census to ascertain the exact population of various castes and frame schemes for them accordingly.

Speaking at a rally in Bhopal, Kharge questioned why Modi did not visit Manipur which witnessed large-scale ethnic violence earlier this year, but was visiting poll-bound states including Madhya Pradesh and Telangana.

Had the BJP come to power immediately after Independence, it would have imposed Manu Smriti in India, he said, and also accused the saffron party of opening a 'nafrat ki dukan' (shop of hatred) as against the Congress's 'mohabbat ki dukan' (shop of love).

'PM Modi has not gone to Manipur where fights erupted, houses were looted, cars burnt and homes ruined. But he is going to Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh, Telangana and Rajasthan which are going to the polls, except Mizoram,' he said.

The Congress wants to keep inflation under check, Kharge told the audience.

'Our government is coming with more than 150 seats (out of the total 230) in MP. We will curb inflation,' he said.

Wherever there is peace, the BJP wants to ignite fires there, the Congress president alleged.

'They always carry a matchbox in their pockets and keep petrol in their hand...They have not talked about peace anywhere. Had they formed the country's first government (after Independence), then Manu's laws would have been imposed...for making the rich richer, and the poor poorer,' he said.

Jawaharlal Nehru, the first prime minister of the country, strengthened democracy, while Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar gave a Constitution that granted voting rights to everyone, Kharge said.

Nehru also built big industries in Bhopal and elsewhere which were now being sold to businessmen, he said.

'People got lakhs of jobs at these industries...These are either being shut down or sold off to businessmen which has shrunk employment...This has reduced jobs for the people from the reserved category,' he said. PTI MAS LAL NP KRK KRK

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