New Delhi: A BJP member in the Lok Sabha today accused the Congress of “insulting pakodawallas”, citing the case of an engineering graduate who is making more money by selling the snack.
The remarks by Pralhad Joshi came a day after BJP chief Amit Shah said in Rajya Sabha that it was better for a youth to earn a living by selling pakodas instead of remaining unemployed.
During a debate on the Motion of Thanks for the President’s address in the Lower House, his party also claimed that the Narendra Modi government has fulfilled Mahatma Gandhi’s dream of a clean India in 3 and a half years which the Congress could not do in its six decades of rule.
Joshi, who seconded the motion after his party colleague Rakesh Singh moved it and initiated the debate, referred to senior Congress leader P Chidambaram’s jibe at Modi and said “you (Congress) insulted Modiji who used to sell tea (during his childhood). Now you are insulting pakoda walas.”
Citing an example, he said that in his Dharwad constituency, he knew a person who holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering and sells pakodas. “He left his job and is selling pakodas because he is earning more,” Joshi said.
Earlier, Joshi’s party colleague Rakesh Singh spoke about the achievements of the government in various fields, particularly in implementing the ‘Swachh Bharat’ (Clean India) campaign.
He said the Congress enjoyed power for nearly six decades but did not fulfil Gandhi’s vision of clean India which the NDA government realised in just three-and-half years.
Referring to the Swachh Bharat campaign, he said, “They (UPA) enjoyed power for 55 years but we have realised Mahatma Gandhi’s vision in three years. “A total of 5.5 crore toilets were built in the last three years.”
“For our government, every section, every religion is equal.
We consider the opposition also to be part of the development process,” he said.
Singh said the government has been ensuring welfare of all sections irrespective of their religion, caste and creed.
He also spoke about alleged scams and corruption during the UPA regime to attack the Congress and said “earlier, the discussions were on corruption. But now, there is no such talk.”
Singh attacked the Congress and the other opposition parties for blocking the OBC Bill in the Rajya Sabha. The newly amended OBC Bill was again introduced in the Lok Sabha in the winter session which ended last month.
He lauded the government for providing insurance to over 31 crore people through Pradhan Mantri Bima Yojana, ensuring electricity supply to villages through the Ujjwala Yojana and giving soil health cards to farmers.
Singh also made a case for abolishing of instant triple talaq and supported the idea of simultaneous polls to Lok Sabha and state assemblies.
Observing that after 3.5 years of Modi gvernment, positive changes are being noticed in the country, he advised the opposition to work with a positive attitude.
After Singh, Joshi said the Modi government was working to strengthen social justice and “bring about structural changes. Congress could not change the system because they did not have the mindset of change.”
On blackmoney, he said with the Benami Act and demonetisation, the government has tried to unearth the unaccounted money in the system.
Maintaining that the government had led India to become the fastest growing economy in the world, he listed its achievements, including “highest” spending on healthcare expenditure in the next year’s Budget and the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana.
He said that so far, Rs 73,000 crore have been deposited in 31 crore account holders of Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana.