LS debate: Congres takes potshots at BJP

New Delhi, June 05: Upbeat over its victory in the Lok Sabha polls, Congress on Friday took potshots at the BJP saying that its ideology of “hate speeches” and “raking up” religion have been rejected by the people.

Initiating the discussion on the Motion of Thanks to the President for her address to the joint sitting of Parliament, Congress leader Girija Vyas also accused the BJP of stealing the issues of development of the Congress.

“In this elections people gave a strong message to the BJP and its so-called principles. They ended what began with the India Shining campaign of the NDA,” she said.

In an apparent reference to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and Pilibhit MP Varun Gandhi, Vyas said “the kind of harsh words that came from Gujarat and a youth from Uttar Pradesh were rejected by the people.”

In her 45-minute remarks, Vyas quoted several Congress leaders from Mahatma Gandhi to Rahul Gandhi to stress the party’s ideals of secularism, development and inclusive growth.

She credited the UPA’s “excellent performance” in the elections to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh who gave “able leadership” to the country, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi’s guidance to the party and Rahul Gandhi, who gave “new direction” to the youth.

Vyas also referred to Congress contesting the Lok Sabha polls on its own in Uttar Pradesh and said the poll results in the northern state have shown that people still have faith in the Congress and it will continue to grow.

The new UPA government will continue to espouse the cause of secularism and security, Vyas said adding that the Centre has drawn up a multi-pronged strategy to deal with the challenges posed by terrorism, naxalism and communalism.

On the economic front, she said the efforts by Sonia Gandhi, Singh and then Finance Minister P Chidambaram saved the country from the effects of the global financial crisis.

Vyas said National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme, implementation of the Sixth Pay Commission also played their part in protecting the country from the economic meltdown.

Seconding the Motion of Thanks moved by Vyas, Congress member P C Chacko pitched for early passage of the the Women’s Reservation Bill.

He said those opposing the Bill should not come in the way of its passage.

Chacko attacked the Left Front government in West Bengal for its “inability” to provide relief to the victims of cyclone ‘Aila’.