Rajasthan is role model for development, not Gujarat: Gehlot

Taking a dig at the BJP and its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Sunday claimed that his State was a role model for development, not Gujarat — where development works were concentrated in Ahmedabad and Baroda. “Development in Gujarat is not a new phenomenon. It has been developed for long, but its rural areas still lack basic facilities. Narendra Modi (Gujarat CM) is marketing it (the development model) by his body language. The fact is that Rajasthan is a role model for development, not Gujarat,” Mr. Gehlot said at the release of the Congress manifesto in Jaipur. Mr. Gehlot said his government had introduced several welfare schemes and social security programmes, and huge investments — domestic as well as foreign — came during his tenure. “Rajasthan is a landlocked State whereas Gujarat has the advantage of coast for import and export. In Gujarat, there is no development in rural areas. Development of Ahmedabad or Baroda cannot be seen as the development of whole Gujarat,” he said, adding Gujarat also lacks social security measures. He also said that it was former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, not Narendra Modi, who is the role model of the youth. “Modi is presenting wrong facts in his rallies. He has no knowledge of history and such person can not be a prime ministerial material. Common sense of people in the country is robust and extraordinary, and he will be exposed in days to come,” the Rajasthan Chief Minister claimed. He alleged that Mr. Modi was spreading wrong messages among masses and trying to create communal divides. “Discrimination was done during Modi rule. The party did not give ticket to any Muslim candidate in Gujarat elections,” he said. Mr. Gehlot said BJP’s Rajasthan State unit chief and former Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje — who disappeared from the state for four-and-a-half years and came back only to seek votes — was equivalent to Modi in marketing (their success). “Raje threatened to quit BJP on her party leader Gulab Chand Kataria’s plan to undertake a ‘yatra’. When she cannot be loyal to the party which gave her an identity and the opportunity to become the Chief Minister, then how can the people of the state expect her to be loyal to them?” Mr. Gehlot asked.

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