Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to bring back “fugitive” diamond merchant Nirav Modi during his next foreign trip.
Addressing a party rally at Mendipathar, the first of his several stops across Meghalaya’s Garo Hills districts, Mr. Gandhi criticised the Prime Minister for “selling false dreams” a few years ago “just as Nirav Modi sold diamonds as stuff that dreams are made of”.
“You want to know where is Nirav Modi who has run away with ₹22,000-crore belonging to the people of India. I urge Narendra Modiji to bring Nirav Modi back along with the people’s money the next time he goes abroad,” the Congress chief said.
“Another Modi arrived a few years ago to sell us dreams of ‘ achhey din’ (good days). The youth, farmers and tribals believed what he promised. After four years, nobody believes he can fulfil his promises,” Mr. Gandhi said.
Mr Gandhi also underlined the “anti-Christian agenda” of the BJP and its mentor, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). A majority of the principal tribes of Meghalaya — Garo, Khasi and Jaintia — follow Christianity.
“With the RSS, one of the BJP ministers had actually come to Meghalaya to offer crores of rupees to the church. I know BJP has a lot of money... With the money, BJP bought many MPs, MLAs and people from the Congress party,” he said.
Money, Mr Gandhi said, has made BJP so arrogant that “they believe they can buy even God”. But the spirit of the tribal people of Meghalaya can never be bought, he said.
Takes on NPP
The Congress president then focussed his attack on the National People’s Party (NPP), which he labelled as BJP’s B-team. The NPP is a member of the BJP-helmed North East Democratic Alliance.
The NPP is seen as the main challenger for the Congress in Meghalaya, specifically Garo Hills comprising 24 assembly seats.