Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Monday accused BJP's Amethi candidate Smriti Irani of distributing shoes in order to insult Rahul Gandhi. Calling Irani an "outsider", she said the people in the Congress chief's Lok Sabha constituency are not beggars.
People of Amethi and Rae Bareli have self-respect and they do not beg from anyone, the Congress general secretary in-charge of eastern Uttar Pradesh said during an interaction with the voters in the key parliamentary constituency.
"...if anyone has to beg, it is them (BJP), who will beg for your votes," a visibly agitated Priyanka told the voters in the presence of reporters at a "nukkad sabha". She also slammed "outsider" Irani for distributing shoes in Amethi.
"She (Irani) thinks she can insult Rahul Gandhi by doing this," Priyanka said, adding that the Union minister was in fact insulting the people of Amethi.
"The people of Amethi are very sensible. You all know who was going to open a food park in Amethi and the fact that it has not been opened till now. The food park would have benefitted five lakh farmers in Amethi and Rae Bareli," she said.
Irani was prompt to react to Gandhi's remarks, and said: "I have been an actor and it would be better if Priyanka Gandhi does not stage a drama."
Irani, who had lost to Rahul Gandhi in Amethi in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, is again hoping to breach the Gandhi family bastion five years later.
Talking about the condition of the people of Amethi, she said there were those who could not even afford a pair of shoes.
"If she (Priyanka) has even an iota of shame and humanity, she should visit Hariharpur and see the truth for herself. But for going to Hariharpur, she has to first ask the missing MP (Rahul) about its location," the Union textiles minister added.
Lashing out at the BJP, Priyanka also said, "You (public) must have seen that former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi had gone to various villages of Amethi. You should ask your elders and perhaps there was none whom he had not met.
"At the same time, what is the situation in Varanasi? Prime Minister Narendra Modi has not gone to even a single village in his constituency in the last five years to inquire about the well-being of the people. Your (Uttar Pradesh) Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath gets the hands and faces of Dalits washed before entering a village inhabited by poor people."
She said none of the youngsters she met during poll campaigning told her that they got employment in the last five years.
Reminding the voters of Modi's 2014 poll promise of generating two crore employment opportunities every year, the Congress leader claimed that 50 lakh people lost their jobs during the five-year rule of the BJP-led government.
Urging the voters to vote for the Congress in the ongoing Lok Sabha polls, she said, "The BJP has not only betrayed the people of Amethi, it has betrayed the entire country. Congress workers should visit each and every household and establish contact with every person."
(With PTI inputs)