Tiruchirapalli: In a veiled attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi today said he and other leaders are not listening to the voice of people as they believe they have the power and take all the decisions.
"They are not listening to you because they believe they have the power. It is because they have the power, they don't need to listen to you.
"It is because people around them make them believe that all the answers come from them. They believe that because they are the ones sitting in the CM's house, in the PM's house, they are the ones taking decisions and they believe they don't need to listen to you," he said addressing a public meeting to celebrate the birth centenary of the late K Kamaraj, a chief minister who rose to become AICC President.
"May be sitting in the CM's house for so many years they have forgotten something. It is when they are in power, listening becomes most important," Gandhi said.
Earlier in Delhi, Rahul claimed that Modi's credibility was on the decline and said the Prime Minister should listen to the voices of the people of the country who are demanding an answer from him over controversies confronting the government.
"The Prime Minister had assured the country that he will not tolerate corruption. His words should carry weight. But he speaks in air, he speaks whatever comes to his mind, his credibility is slowly declining.
"We asked the PM what he thinks about Lalit Modi. We got no answer. We got no answer on the Vyapam scam, no answer on Chhattisgarh and no answer on Sushma," he told reporters outside Parliament.
Rahul also attacked the political leadership in Tamil Nadu, including the Chief Minister whom he did not name, saying people of the state including the youth, poor and women were suffering as their voice was not being heard by their leaders.
He also hit out at the regional parties over the money they make from the liquor trade and invoked Kamaraj to ask people to help bring the Congress party to power which will try and install the "golden era of Kamaraj" back in Tamil Nadu.
"It is when they are in power that listening becomes most important. Forget about listening, the current leaders of the regional parties don't even meet the people of Tamil Nadu.
Some don't even go out of their house and outside their houses in the streets of Tamil Nadu people are suffering," he said. Seeking to win over the youth in the state, the Congress vice president said the "progressive" people in the state were suffering from the problem of unemployment and assured that Congress will help provide them with jobs so they can fend for their families.
He also sought to woo the lower classes alleging that a large number of atrocities were being committed on them and those committing atrocities on them were not being punished.
He also promised setting up of fast track courts so that no one went unpunished.
While seeking to woo the women in the state, the Congress leader made a scathing attack on the liquor policy adopted by the state alleging that Rs 10,000 from every household was going into the hands of regional parties as they were making money from them.
"I understand the pain that the women of Tamil Nadu have to face because of this. I know the government's liquor policy is destroying your families. I want to tell the women of Tamil Nadu that we understand the pain you go through and we are going to fight to make sure that this pain is removed," he said.
Rahul said the leaders of regional parties do not listen to the people "because they want to make money through the liquor trade".
"Kamaraj ji build families, build the communities. But the current leaders are destroying families, are destroying the women. The sad part is the more you suffer, the more money they make. They are weakening the state of Tamil Nadu. I understand the people of Tamil Nadu are upset and Congress party understands this deeply," he said.
He assured that Congress, if voted to power, will ensure that a new liquor policy is framed after hearing the voice of people and women in the state and will work in their interest.
"The liquor policy will work in your interest, no matter who you are and where you are. A dalit, a tribal, minority or women, whoever you are, the Congress party will help you and work in your interest.
Asking people to bring the Congress back to power, he said, "This was the golden time of Kamaraj, help us bring that time back to Tamil Nadu today."
The rally was hit by heavy rain but Rahul refused an umbrella and continued to speak on the contributions of late Congress leader K Kamaraj.
As rains intensified, state unit Congress chief EVKS Elangovan interrupted and asked the cheerful crowd whether it would brave the downpour to which the gathering responded with a roaring 'yes'.
(With inputs from PTI)