New Delhi: As soon as Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi finished addressing the annual general meeting of the Confederation of Indian Industries here on Thursday, the Bharatiya Janata Party expressed its disappointment.
"We hoped that he would speak on corruption, inflation but he has disappointed the nation," said BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain.
Another BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar went on to say that (Gujarat CM Narendra) Modi-phobia was being reflected in Gandhi`s speech.
Javadekar further called Gandhi a confused young leader who presented a confused speech which nobody could understand.
"Because a leader who is ruling the country, it is their government, they should have answered what they have done; but instead of answering about the achievements he was all the while only raising questions which the common people are raising. It was in a way tacit admission that no major progress has taken place in last nine years," said Javadekar.
"And more than that, it is also tacit admission that even empowering of the people, which was the theme of his speech, has not happened during the UPA rule. And it was very clear that there was a Modi-phobia reflected in his speech," he added.
Gandhi today praised India Inc for introducing the country to the world.
"When I went to university in 1991, nobody knew India...that is not the case now thanks to you people," he said, adding India said is bursting with optimism and ideas.
The 42-year-old Congress scion, formally addressing a gathering such as this for the first time, said: "We tend to think of India as a nation, but if we go back 100 years, India was actually an energy...a force".
Industry chamber CII`s annual general meetings over the years have seen many political bigwigs cutting across party lines making an appearance to enunciate their vision for economic growth. Congress president and Rahul`s mother Sonia Gandhi had made at least two showings at the annual conference in the past.
This year`s AGM was inaugurated by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday.
(With IANS inputs)