Varanasi: Not wanting to let go the upper hand he gained on the issue of atrocities on Bhatta Parsaul farmers, Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday took the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati head-on and demanded a judicial probe into the incident.
Speaking at the state convention of Congress in Varanasi, the youth leader said, “Our fight is not for winning elections but to ensure better future for youths and development.”
Recalling his dramatic visit to the violence hit village, Gandhi said, “Bhatta Parsaul village was deserted when I visited it. The SDM of the area told me that Maoists have come to that place.”
“Locals said that they were ready to give land. Women and poor farmers in the village told me, see what is happening to us. Why our houses are being burnt? Why are we beaten up? These questions are being asked”, he further added.
Cornering Mayawati over the issue, Rahul said, “The Uttar Pradesh government says all is well in Bhatta Parsaul. Then why Section 144 (prohibitory orders) has been imposed there. If everything is alright, why people are fleeing?”
He also questioned Mayawati’s intentions saying, “If everything is alright, why a judicial probe is not being ordered? Free and fair inquiry is the need of the hour to fix responsibility.”
In a clear indication towards the upcoming assembly elections in the state in 2012, Rahul said, “What is the state government is doing. Bundelkhand is seeking help but the state government is not doing anything. I went to the Prime Minister and did whatever I can. But the money sent from Centre is not utilised here.”
"I recently went there (Bundelkhand) where condition of roads were not good, farmers were not getting their due in mandi (market", he said asking partymen to gear up for the decisive battle.
Declaring that Congress is the only alternative for the people of Uttar Pradesh, the young leader said, “There is no development in the state for past 20 years. We want to change UP, we want to ensure development and this cannot happen without Congress."”
He also assured the people of the state that, “I will reach all corners of Uttar Pradesh and fight for the people. I will hold the hand of the common man and fight for justice for all.”
Asking party workers to shun the habit of pointing out what other parties like BSP, SP or Peace Party were doing in UP, Rahul said, "you all should stop saying this. Tell what Congress is doing and how we will change UP".
The Congress central leadership, including party president Sonia Gandhi, will set the party`s agenda for the 2012 Uttar Pradesh assembly elections during this convention.
Sonia Gandhi will address the valedictory session Thursday, and will also hold a public rally at the Beniyabagh ground.