Congress president Rahul Gandhi today advocated for forging a Grand Alliance of like-minded parties by burying their differences to contest the next year’s general elections against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Speaking to reporters, Gandhi said people are fed up with the BJP government and accused it of attacking the Constitution and institutions of the country. “Mahagathbandhan (Grand Alliance) is a sentiment in people and not just politics,” he said. “Whole nation is united against RSS and BJP.”
The Congress leader added that small traders and businessmen were badly hit by the government’s November 2016 demonetisation decision. “People are troubled due to demonetisation; traders, small businessmen have been affected.” Besides, he also said that “PM Modi and the BJP are attacking the Constitution and institutions of the nation.”
The talks of a grand alliance to be pitted against the BJP in next year’s general elections gained momentum after BJP’s drubbing in recent bypolls and Congress and JD(S) joining the ranks post elections in Karnataka to keep the saffron party away from power. The coming together of opposition parties including the Congress at swearing-in ceremony of Karnataka government led by HD Kumaraswamy last month was billed to be a show of strength of all like-minded forces opposed to the BJP.
On skyrocketing prices of petrol and diesel, Rahul said the government is unwilling to bring fuel under the ambit of GST. “The petrol prices are burdening the common man, we had asked for fuel to be brought under GST but the government is not interested.”
Rahul’s remark comes in the backdrop of rising petrol and diesel prices in recent days that are hovering about Rs 75 per litre in most of the cities in the country.