Mandya: Stepping up his offensive against the BJP Government in Karnataka, Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi today accused it of having “mortgaged” people’s future to “mafia” and “sold” the state to mining barons Reddy brothers.
Going ballistic against the BJP in the third lap of his campaign for the May 5 assembly elections, Gandhi charged it with having “built” the Reddy brothers — G Janardhana and G Karunakara — to come to power in the state.
“The BJP people talk about corruption. Yesterday in Parliament, they spoke about corruption. But they will not talk about Karnataka. They will not mention the corruption in Karnataka. They will not say a chief minister went to jail. They will not say Reddy brothers who they sold the entire state to….they talk about corruption,” Gandhi said.
The BJP leaders “who have built” the Reddy brothers, “who have taken their money” and “who are responsible for corruption” in Karnataka go to the rest of the country and talk about corruption, he said. Gandhi said there was a time when Karnataka used to shine and be talked about as a progressive and leading state but “the sad part is that in the last nine years, (when Congress was out of power), Karnataka’s shine has disappeared.” For the first time in history, a chief minister had gone to jail, said Gandhi, apparently referring to BS Yeddyurappa, who is facing corruption charges and had to quit as chief minister on graft charge after his indictment by Lok Ayukta in its report on illegal mining. “.. and your future has been mortgaged to mafia,” Gandhi said.
He said Karnataka had a lot of natural resources, among them huge iron ore reserve. “This wealth does not belong to one individual. It belongs to everybody in Karnataka. It belongs to the youth and old people of Karnataka.’ The resources were supposed to be used to build a future for the youth of the state’but “what had happened in the last nine years is this wealth has been given to a single family,” he said in an obvious reference to Reddy brothers.
Janardhana Reddy, a former state minister, has been lodged in a jail in Andhra Pradesh since his arrest in an illegal mining case by CBI in 2011.
“In order to come to power, BJP had got the support of Reddy brothers. They have given legislative future to the two brothers,” Gandhi said.
Asking where this money came from, he told the gathering, “from your resources.”
“So BJP used your money to give your Vidhana Sabha to Reddy brothers,” he said.
Gandhi said instead of exporting iron ore to China, steel plants should have been set up creating jobs. “Instead, you got a corrupt Vidhana Sabha. You got no jobs. Your national resources were directed to China. This is the type of government that the BJP offered for the last five years. Your natural resources were given away to groups of people and Vidhana Sabha was handed over to the mafia.” Charging BJP government with failure to provide drinking water and electricity to farmers, Gandhi said the “game” in Bangalore and Karnataka was “not about you (people).It is about your money. It is not about your future. It is about how to take your money away from you and loot it.” In his earlier campaign rounds, Gandhi had charged the BJP government with having created a “world record” in graft and being a “champion” of corruption.