Ahmedabad: Congress MP Sachin Pilot on Saturday hit back at Chief Minister Narendra Modi over his criticism of Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, saying the ruling party at the Centre will make all attempts to give the people of Gujarat a better life in the times to come for there has been no progress in the last eight to ten years.
Pilot alleged that a Lokayukta has not been appointed in Gujarat in the last eight to nine years, and said that CAG had levelled allegation of loss to the Gujarat Government of Rs 26,000 crores.
"I have been told that around seven lakh farmers have committed suicide in Gujarat. The people of Gujarat initially had a debt of Rs. 24,000 crores, but now it has increased to Rs. 1,40,000 crore. If so much growth and development has taken place, then why is the present condition like this. Nobody would have approached the people in a democracy had all problems been solved by campaigning and publishing big posters and banners," said Pilot, while highlighting the problems faced by the people of Gujarat.
"We will approach those sections of society, who are not satisfied here. We will put forward our viewpoints before them, whether they are Dalits, tribals, and youngsters, elderly or vulnerable. The state government could not do anything for them in the last 10 years, but the Congress Party will try to give them a better life," he added.
Asserting that there is dictatorship in Gujarat, Pilot said the Congress Party, which will focus on the problems of the voters, would urge them to vote in its favour.
Pilot also took a jibe at Narendra Modi over his Prime Ministerial ambitions.
"It is very surprising that whichever BJP leader visits here, he or she declares Modiji a Prime Ministerial candidate. And then they deviate from their stand after moving out from Gujarat. I cannot count the Prime Ministerial candidates in the BJP, but what is worth watching here is that votes are being asked on statements that ``I am going to be the Prime Minister``," said Pilot.
"It is the people of the country who make the Prime Minister or Chief Minister. I just want to say that it is the state assembly polls, we have to focus on Gujarat and the core issues here," he added.
Modi had earlier on Friday countered Sonia Gandhi``s charges that the ruling BJP Government``s promises were ``hollow and false``, and alleged that the Congress President was spreading lies before the people of the state.
"It is shameful how Sonia Gandhi is spreading lies on issues about which Congress has lost right to speak. She says Gujarat roads are bad. Is that believable? She says Gujarat farmers are ruined. Is that how Gujarat sees 11 per cent growth in agriculture?" he asked, while disapproving Sonia Gandhi``s remarks.
The Congress President, who addressed poll rallies in Mandvi in South Gujarat and Keshod in Saurashtra earlier on Friday, lashed out at the BJP``s development claims in Gujarat and highlighted the failures of the Narendra Modi-led government.
Gujarat will go to the polls in two phases on December 13 and 17. The counting of votes will take place on December 20.