MUMBAI: Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday made yet another attack on the Narendra Modi government at the Centre and said that the 'Mahagathbandhan' or the Grand Alliance of like-minded parties is the need of the hour to take on the ruling BJP.
''The grand alliance of the Opposition parties to take on the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi is not just the sentiment of politicians but also of the people,'' Rahul Gandhi said in Mumbai.
The Gandhi scion said that his party is trying to join together these voices and the work is going on.
"It is the sentiment of the people and not just political parties which are opposed to the BJP to have a 'mahagathbandhan' (grand alliance) that can take on the BJP, the RSS and Prime Minister Narendra Modi," he said at a press conference here.
'Mahagathbandhan' is a sentiment in people and not just politics. Whole nation is united against RSS and BJP: Rahul Gandhi pic.twitter.com/YKq4wZOUiw
— ANI (@ANI) June 13, 2018
He alleged that "Prime Minister Modi and the BJP are attacking the Constitution and damaging the vital institutions and the question facing the people is how to stop this.''
The Congress president also trained his guns at the BJP dispensation at the Centre over rising petrol prices. He alleged that the the Opposition has been asking Prime Minister Modi to bring prices of petrol and diesel under the Goods and Services Tax (GST), but "he is not interested."
"There was an attack on Mumbai (through demonetisation). There are small industries, traders here... The leather industry and the cloth industry. They were attacked through the 'Gabbar Singh Tax'. The whole country is sad. Small businessmen are sad and we are fighting for them," he said.
Comparing the present situation with the previous UPA rule, Rahul said, ''During the UPA government's rule, the crude price was USD 130 a barrel that has now come down to USD 70 a barrel.''
"However, the benefit has not been passed on to the common man. Where does this money go? In the pockets of 15 to 20 rich people," Rahul Gandhi alleged.
Attacking the Narendra Modi government over rising petrol prices, he said that it has increased the burden on the common man.
''The petrol prices are burdening the common man, we had asked for fuel to be brought under GST but the Modi Govt is not interested,'' Rahul Gandhi said.
The Gandhi scion has in recent past attacked the Modi government over rising fuel prices and among other issues including the farmers' agitation etc.
Targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi after the oil firms announced a cut of 1 paisa in petrol and diesel prices, Rahul Gandhi had called the move “childish and in poor taste”.
The Congress president even took to micro-blogging site Twitter to attack the Prime Minister over the move.
“Dear PM, You've cut the price of Petrol and Diesel today by 1 paisa. ONE paisa!?? If this is your idea of a prank, it’s childish and in poor taste. P.S. A ONE paisa cut is not a suitable response to the #FuelChallenge I threw you last week,” he had tweeted.
The attack by the Gandhi scion on the Prime Minister came after the Indian Oil Corporation clarified on the rate cut.
Last week, the IOC announced a price cut of 60 paise per litre in petrol and 56 paise per litre in diesel, but later clarified that the fuel prices had been reduced merely by 1 paisa per litre. The Indian Oil Corporation blamed clerical error for the confusion.
The 47-year-old Congress president is on a two-day visit to Maharashtra since yesterday.
On Tuesday, he had appeared before a trial court in Bhiwandi where he had pleaded not guilty in connection with a defamation filed against him by a RSS activist.