Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday promised to return everything Narendra Modi government “stole” from the Northeast.
Addressing a mammoth election rally for Congress candidate KL Chishi for the lone Lok Sabha seat in Nagaland at the DDSC stadium here, Gandhi said Modi government has taken away special status granted to the Northeast, North East Industrial Policy, and other special provisions and wants to “impose” the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill on the indigenous people of the region.
“We understand you have unique challenges, unique problems and you require special status. We are committed to bestow the special status back in Northeast and the North East Industrial Policy,” he said.
He vowed not to allow passage of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, in the Parliament in future. He said he heard the views of a large number of people from the Northeast on the bill and could “feel their pain” and decided not to allow the bill to pass in Rajya Sabha.
According to Gandhi, the Congress does not see the Northeast as a “region but as a potential bridge to South East Asia”.
He said the Look East Policy has the power to completely transform the Northeast which is rich in natural resources.
He accused the Modi government of taking away money from Northeast and giving it to top industrialists of the country.
Gandhi said Congress believed that every part of India has its own way of looking at the world while the Modi and RSS wants to impose their ideology on India.
He assured to protect the culture, history, identity and customs of Nagaland and the Northeast.
He said when Nagas are not allowed to voice their views, then it cannot be India. “Congress and I will not allow Nagas’ way of thinking and their way of life to be crushed,” he asserted.
“We want to ensure that nobody can challenge the Nagas,” he further stated.
He also assured to protect the history, identity, proud heritage, culture and way of life of the people of Northeast.
Gandhi reiterated the Congress will ensure that every household in India whose earning is less than Rs 12,000 a month get Rs 12,000 every month if it comes to power at the Centre. The amount will be credited to their account every month, he assured.
Calling the minimum income guarantee scheme “revolutionary”, he said India “cannot afford to have poor people in 21st century”.
The Gandhi scion also remarked that any entrepreneur who wants to start a business do not have to take permission from any government department and will be given loan.
On the Naga issue, the Congress chief said it is a complex issue which involves many stakeholders. He assured to listen to all the stakeholders and try to find a solution as soon as possible.
“This is a clear commitment once again to you. I will not give you empty promises. I will work with all stakeholders and deliver a solution,” he said.
Rahul said the Congress “does not believe in words but in deeds while Modi makes new commitment in every speech of his”.