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Updated: December 22, 2013 01:08 IST

Corruption bleeding our people dry: Rahul

K. Balchand
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Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi addresses at the valedictory session of 86th Annual General Meeting of FICCI, in New Delhi on Saturday. Photo: V. Sudershan
The Hindu Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi addresses at the valedictory session of 86th Annual General Meeting of FICCI, in New Delhi on Saturday. Photo: V. Sudershan

"Congress needs to have foresight and humility to accept messages being expressed to us"

Acknowledging the poor show of his party in the recent Assembly elections in four States, it was an assertive Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi who said the party needed to have the “foresight and humility to accept the messages being expressed to us.”

“We did not hit a six in the elections. We did not do as well as we were supposed to,” Mr. Gandhi candidly admitted. But quickly gaining ground, he put forth his action plan while going all out to woo India Inc.

In his 30-minute speech, marked by candour, wit and keen observations, the Congress vice-president highlighted the achievements of the UPA government. He invoked the Right to Information, the recent Parliament nod to the Lokpal Bill and the decision to keep convicted criminals out of Parliament to drive home his point.

Mr. Gandhi said the UPA government was considering a Natural Resource Investment Special Purpose Vehicle. “The idea is to obtain all clearances before auctioning projects to private players. This is a powerful and innovative idea,” he said, addressing the 86th annual general meeting of FICCI.

Stressing the need to go further than the Lokpal Bill as part of a strong framework against corruption, Mr. Gandhi said he had appealed for the passage of six critical anti-corruption bills in Parliament.

Flagging two such proposals, he said while the amendment to the Prevention of Corruption Act would protect honest officers, the Grievance Redressal Bill would ensure that every citizen had the right to timely delivery of goods and services by his government.

Referring to the malaise of corruption, he said it was “bleeding our people dry. It is an unacceptable burden on the people.” His observation on his own conduct evoked a round of applause from the business leaders. “I got to learn that it is not polite to ask that ordinances be torn and thrown into dustbin!” His reference was to a press conference here where he said the ordinance to allow convicted criminals into Parliament should be torn. It led to the UPA government withdrawing it.

“Unfortunately, good news about this government doesn’t seem to sell newspapers these days,” the Gandhi scion observed.

Without naming any party, the Congress leader warned against the destructiveness of fascism and called for unity, compassion and harmony as the guiding force. Promising to abide by the voice of the people, Mr. Gandhi asserted that the Congress would renew itself and rise from adversity once again to fight for its age-old values of tolerance and compassion. He said the vision of his party was of a country united by compassion, harmony and peace and humility. The country had to eschew the greed for power, hatred, and conflict and hubris, Mr. Gandhi said, calling for trumping hatred as ever.

Reminding the gathering of age-old bonds of the Congress with FICCI, he said Mahatma Gandhi had first addressed FICCI meet in 1931. “You understand the global economic environment well; listening to your voice and heeding it is imperative.”

Pointing out that India was a fast-moving economy, he said business and industrial houses could not be held back by slow decision making. “Accountability has to be clear, fixed and time bound.”

Mr. Gandhi said the high economic growth during the past decade was solely because of the political stability and rational policy environment provided by the UPA government.

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Rahul and Modi speak about the achievements of their respective
administrations. They have been put into such positions only to do the
best for the country - maximum benefit at lowest cost. The chest-
beating at every given opportunity and forum 'we achieved' or 'I have
delivered' is unnecessary. The elected politicians get paid for their
time and effort; hence no need to praise oneself.
Rahul's comments on corruption is too little too late. UPA could have
taken tough measures to combat corruption when the reins were handed
over to them; instead they allowed the cancer to grow to such mammoth
proportions that a cabinet minister and a MP had to be put behind
bars.
Congress did not handle the JPC any better. The Chairman refused to
allow the prime accused (Raja) to state his case.
Law and order is another area where UPA has failed in Delhi. Poor
Nirbaya.
Rahul should talk about the failures of UPA and Congress Governments
in States instead of indulging in self praise.

from:  Mani Sandilya
Posted on: Dec 22, 2013 at 13:16 IST

"He invoked the Right to Information, the recent Parliament nod to the Lokpal Bill and
the decision to keep convicted criminals out of Parliament to drive home his point." -
Over a period of 10 years, the RTI was passed in 2005, the Lokpal bill in the last
fortnight, and we all know the hilarious story behind the convicted-criminals-in-
Parliament. Does this mean that all this talk is hollow?

from:  Vikram Raj
Posted on: Dec 22, 2013 at 11:19 IST

The Gandhi family should admit its failure to lead the political party
it leads to power in various States and hand over leadership to capable
veterans in the party. Leading a large political party in a large
country like ours is indeed a difficult task.

from:  K.Vijayakumar
Posted on: Dec 22, 2013 at 07:28 IST

Tough on Lokpal, Soft on corrupt relatives and congress leaders. Will the real Rahul Gandhi stand up pl.?

from:  Vinhudi
Posted on: Dec 22, 2013 at 07:12 IST

Rahul orates as if his party was not responsible for bleeding India.If he feels strongly about
why is he scared to talk about Kalmadi,Dixit,etc.

from:  Mittal
Posted on: Dec 22, 2013 at 06:30 IST

Great revelation!! Finally we know what is ailing this country, i.e.,
corruption! Rahul Gandhi in his infinite wisdom and insight is able to
figure it out what the rest of the country didn't realize until he
spelled it out for us simpletons!

from:  Suvojit Dutta
Posted on: Dec 22, 2013 at 04:48 IST

Mr. Gandhi is correct that the babus and the politicians have too much arbitrary power. It is a
source of corruption, bad decisions, nepotism and favouritism. Neither the Congress nor
other parties over the last 60 years saw fit to change the old British administrative set up
which gave too much discretionary power to colonial district commissioners and other such
babus to do whatever they wanted. So babus and politicians continued to Rule people
instead of Serving them. Many people believe that the current babus are worse than the
British administrators as they are less competent and more corruptible. We need to abolish
all colonial type jobs, governance structures and discretionary powers in the hands of
individuals and make the exercise of such power subject to full transparency. Babus need to
be taught to SERVE people instead of RULING them. Response to charges against an
Indian IFS in New York shows babus and politicians are mainly concerned about themselves,
not the poor.

from:  Virendra Gupta
Posted on: Dec 22, 2013 at 02:55 IST

While RaGa was speaking on these lines the Govt of Maharashtra decided
to reject the Adarsh Panel report. The Congress is well known for
double speak. The Congress VP talked about corruption and the Cong CM
rejects the judicial report saying that is in public interest.Who is
ruling India.The Corrupt congress ministers or the preacher RAGa

from:  P N V Krisdhnan
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 23:12 IST


At last he could identify what the real issue is.All Indians must
appreciate the spirit of this young man.Now the question is where to
start from.The saying goes the clean up should always start from with
in ,start from one's own home.Hope he will start from the asset
accumulated by Robert Vadra and move out to the public when that
herculean task is at least half done.

from:  Bose a panicker
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 23:01 IST

Better late than never, the Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi has admitted that admitted that corruption is one of the biggest menaces plaguing India, which is "bleeding" people of the country. Many believe that corruption, bribery and embezzlement are the bane of India, which impede economic growth and welfare of the people. The passing of the Lokpal Bill is certainly a step ahead to fight corruption. Many more concrete steps have to undertaken to fight it because corruption in India is universalized and institutionalized. . Corruption and bribery are found in all wings of the administrative machinery of central and state governments as well as local administration. Reports show that most of the officials who have some authority to show favour in one way or other indulge in corruption and bribery. Recently, the volume of funds involved in corrupt practices have shown upward spiral.

from:  Dr.C.Murukadas
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 21:54 IST

Some one has to educate Rahul Gandhi. The talk is self defeating. This is exactly what oppostion has been saying of the current government. Rahul has agreed to the opposition. This looks like a speech that has to be addressed in in-doors from a Party to the Cabinet.

from:  Rajesh
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 21:41 IST

I don't understand why anything Rahul's says become a headline news! Interestingly
he is talking about corruption when his family is very much the author of bofors
scandal! His party is the center of gravity for all the corruption happened since
independence!! He never spoke about any issue in parliament, disrespected PM and
most importantly talks nonsense!! Please, Hindu, don't make Rahul's speeches as headline news!!

from:  Anandan
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 21:40 IST

I agree with whatever Mr.Rahul Gandhi has said. My question is why
Congress did not follow any of these principles all these years of
rule. Mr.Gandhi looks like is waking up periodically to utter these
words, without making any effort to translate them into action. They
have done every thing opposite of what he is preaching today. The last
10 years has been blown away not following what he is preaching now.
People's suffering is very evident all over the country.
He can do the nation a great favor. He and Soniaji need to quit
Congress and let others run the party. By being a power center, they
have not allowed any democracy in the party. They have encouraged
sycophancy and destroyed the party's foundation. There will be no
takers for the party if they continue to be at the top.

from:  Vittal
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 20:48 IST

Good thoughts about removing corruption. Rahul you are our hope . Be
Prime Minister of India

from:  VINOD
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 19:51 IST

Well said. There is at least one leader who understands the real issue,
and he has articulated in public. Rule of arbitrary power should be
stopped. Common Law should be applied. Process should be in place.
country's' growth is stymied for these reasons.

from:  Chandra
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 19:35 IST

I love Rahul, he should have joined government as a junior minister by
now to be conversant with the Indian democratic system but unfortunately
given up the opportunity. This may cost him even his seat in forthcoming
polls due to non-performance. He should roam in rural India for 90% of
his time instead of confining himself to Delhi.

from:  Vyas K Susarla
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 19:29 IST

Here is a man who wants to genuinely change the way the Government functions and it can only be done step by step beginning with Lokpal. The commentators in this column are obviously the urban upper middle class chronic BJP supporters who never bother about the communal riots and loss of peace.
Rahul Gandhi belongs to a rich and wealthy family, unlike the new age politicos who have questionable backgrounds. Its true that corruption has pervaded all spheres, but the malaise lies in the system and not the individuals. The real beneficiaries of the 2G scam are the corporates who have gobbled hundreds of crores, but the urban middle class conveniently ignores them because they cant bite the hand that feeds them and their newfound luxurious lifestyles.
What Rahul Gandhi means is that if a system is in place without arbitrary powers, then misuse of power can be avoided like the case of doling out acres of land in Gujarat to corporate houses at throwaway prices.

from:  C Balachander
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 19:15 IST

By enthusiastically supporting AAP's programme in Delhi, he could both
get a taster to find out if he likes it or can stand it; and if he can
persevere, begin his atonement on the long road to rehabilitation; after
all if Valmiki could atone ...

Citizens will give their feedback in due course.

from:  D Mahapatra
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 18:45 IST

Could Rahul Gandhi and his family reveal how much money is stored in their personal accounts in Switzerland?

from:  Meera
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 18:14 IST

About Corruption, What Rahul is saying is being said repeateadly 1000
times by ruling party leaders and his Papa/Dada/Dadi etc, but i have NOT
SEEN ANY CONCRETE STEPS TAKEN FOR LAST 60 YEARS SINCE MY BIRTH. Just
hollow words!!! If he really means it, let us see Bansal/Ashwini/Vadra/
Coal chor/2G Culprits/ etc etc in Tihar in next 6 months, their loot
money returned back to where it belongs to ie CITIZENS OF INDIA.

from:  Yash
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 18:09 IST

If the most corrupted say corruption is unacceptable it can only possible in India !!!!

from:  devendra
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 18:09 IST

Ha!! Haa!! LOL!!

from:  Anboli
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 18:06 IST

A great "quote" from a party man,which has been bleeding Indians for the
last 5 decades. Does he mean to say that Nagarwala, Bofors, Acharwala,
2G, Coalgate, Common wealth Games, Adarsh, and so on are not
Corruption. This is the only party in which, Mother, son and daughter in
law have been involved in corruption. I think Rahul wants , made VP of
congress after all these corruption,to prove that he has not done
it.Poll will tell who he is>

from:  R Raman
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 18:01 IST

ha ha ha

from:  stalin
Posted on: Dec 21, 2013 at 17:52 IST
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