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Rahul Gandhi slams Narendra Modi govt in Berkeley address

LiveMint logoLiveMint 12-09-2017 Livemint

New Delhi: Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday criticized the Narendra Modi government and also hinted at some introspection within his party, in an address at the University of California in Berkeley, according to reports.

Slamming the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Narendra Modi government, Gandhi said that “violence, anger and the politics of polarisation have raised their ugly head in India”, a development “that is new to the country”, the Times of India reported. Gandhi was addressing students on ‘India at 70: Reflections on the Path Forward’.

“Any party which is in power in India for ten years will run into a problem. It is natural…The vision that we had laid out in 2004 was designed at best for a ten year period. And it was pretty clear that the vision that we had laid out in 2004. By the time we arrived in 2010-11 it was already not working anymore,” the Indian Express quoted Gandhi as saying, during a Q&A session after his address to the students of the University of California.

Gandhi said unlike the BJP and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the Congress is a “conversation”.

Gandhi began his two-day US visit on Monday and is expected to interact with global thinkers and political leaders, and address overseas Indians as part of an outreach initiative by his party.

From San Francisco, Gandhi is scheduled to travel to Los Angeles. Gandhi is likely to visit Aspen Institute to interact with the think-tank community. In Washington DC, the Congress vice-president is scheduled to interact with members of the think-tank community, political leaders and government officials. Gandhi is also scheduled to travel to Princeton University before his final address to overseas Indians in New York.

The Congress said Gandhi was visiting the US to present the opposition’s perspective on contemporary India and the way forward for the world’s largest democracy. Hitting out at the BJP for criticising Gandhi’s US visit, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said, “If you calculate, Rahul Gandhi’s foreign visits constitute barely .001 per cent of the visits made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi abroad.”

PTI contributed to this report.

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