Rahul taking out yatra in support of middlemen not farmers: Smriti Irani

Smriti Irani

Attacking Congress leader Rahul Gandhi over his protest marches against the three recently passed farm laws, BJP leader and Union minister Smriti Irani Tuesday said he was taking out his yatras not for farmers but in support of "middlemen who looted the country".

Hitting out at the Gandhi scion for his remarks that if his party is voted to power it would abolish the farm laws, Irani said, "I think Rahul Gandhi lives in a dream world where he thinks he is a king."

When Gandhi opposes the farm laws, Irani asked, does he also oppose the proposition that farmer will be paid within three days of selling their produce, that they are free to sell them anywhere in the country and that their land cannot be used in the recovery process in any case.

"The fact is Rahul Gandhi is on Congress yatra in support of middlemen not farmers and it doesn't astonish anyone in the country, she told reporters here, adding the Gandhi family never stood for downtrodden but always for the middlemen.

His party's and especially his family's politics was always dependent on the middlemen who looted the coffers of the country," she alleged.

She categorically said procurements under the MSP regime are currently underway across the country.

Comparing the procurements of paddy during the UPA and the NDA governments, she said that in 2013-14 -- when UPA was in power -- Rs 40,000 crore was spent on this, which jumped to Rs 1.4 lakh crore in 2019-20 (under NDA).

She said there are many examples where the Congress has not only failed farmers, but the entire agriculture landscape of the country.

Gandhi has been taking out protest marches over the last three days against the new farm laws. He had begun his Kheti Bachao' yatra from Moga district on Sunday.

Capping his three days of protests, Gandhi on Tuesday said in Haryana and Punjab that his party will not allow the Centre to imperil India's food security. He reiterated that the farm laws will be abolished if his party comes to power.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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