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As Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a mega rally in Dhemaji, Assam on Monday, the Opposition Congress questioned the incumbent Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government’s “silence” on key issues such as the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), jobs to youths, Scheduled Tribe status to six communities, minimum wages for tea labourers and rising prices of essentials.
Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) president, Ripun Bora, addressing reporters, accused the Modi government of disregarding the people and their aspirations by imposing the contentious CAA on the people of Assam.
“We would like to ask the Prime Minister whether CAA will be withdrawn, taking into consideration the people’s aspirations,” Bora said.
“The BJP government in Assam had promised 25 lakh jobs, after coming to power in 2016. However, it has been able to provide only 80,000 jobs in the past five years, not to mention the 2 crore jobs that Modi promised at the all-India level,” he said.
“This is just three per cent of their promise but 97 per cent of the youths who were expecting that the commitment would be fulfilled, have been left cheated,” the Congress leader said.
Bora also asked the BJP government regarding the commitment to grant Scheduled Tribe (ST) status to six Assam communities, namely Chutiya, Koch-Rajbongshi, Matak, Moran, Tai-Ahom and ‘tea tribe’, some of which are reserved as the Other Backward Classes (OBC).
“From 100 days to three months, to six months to five years, people kept waiting as the promise has not been fulfilled for which the Prime Minister should apologise,” he said.
Bora said that “Likewise, even after five years, why has the minimum daily wage of tea workers not increased from Rs 167 to Rs 351, as demanded by the tea community. Only when our party leader Rahul Gandhi recently announced that the minimum daily wage (would be) increased to Rs 365 per day if the Congress comes to power, that the BJP government raised the wage by only Rs 50.”
“We, therefore, ask the Modi government why it is cheating the people in the name of vote bank politics,” he said.
The APCC chief questioned the BJP government on the rising prices of kitchen essentials and medicine, including life-saving drugs, which has hit the common man hard.
“The Modi government has shifted the burden on the common man in the interest of industrialists,” he alleged.
“Lastly, we would like to ask the Prime Minister why it has imposed an additional tax burden of Rs 60 per litre of fuel, when the crude oil prices in the international market, according to economists and experts, is just Rs 30 per litre,” Bora asked.
The Congress also lambasted the BJP government on its Vision Document, alleging “failure to implement the recommendations of the Assam Accord Clause 6 panel or to seal the Assam-Bangladesh border.”
(Edited by Iban Mawrie)
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