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Rajasthan election is a fight about truth and lies: Ashok Gehlot

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot. Photograph:( DNA )

WION Web Team Jaipur, Rajasthan, India Nov 30, 2018, 03.51 PM (IST)

By Madhuri Kalal

Former Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot has said that he is confident about Congress's victory in the upcoming Assembly elections in the state. In an exclusive interview with Zee Hindustan, the veteran Congress leader said the people of Rajasthan were not happy with the working of Chief Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Vasundhara Raje.

Asserting that people were angry with Vasundhara, Gehlot said that the incumbent government was involved in scandals and scams. He further alleged that money from mafia was being pumped for the ruling party in the run up to the elections.

Talking about issues that would play a crucial role in deciding the fate of the parties, the former chief minister said that issues concerning education, women and farmers were most important. "18,000 schools were shut down. Urea is being distributed under police supervision, and there is no focus on issues like drought," said Gehlot.

He further rubbished allegations by the BJP that the Congress copied the ruling party's manifesto, saying that it was "obvious for them to say so as they have not fulfilled any of their promises".

When asked about Congress president Rahul Gandhi calling Prime Minister Narendra Modi a "chor (thief)", the veteran politician accused the BJP of "twisting" the fact and making it an "emotional issue". "In fact, Rahul Gandhi acts when anyone in Congress makes such remarks," he said, citing the example of CP Joshi, who had targeted Prime Minister Modi over the latter's caste.

According to the former Rajasthan chief minister, the fight in the state is between "truth and lies". He added, "The BJP should explain as to where it got all the money for election campaign."

"The real issues are food, clothes and houses. But they (BJP) mislead people. Prime Minister claims that personal attacks are made on him, but they do not refrain from talking about the caste of Lord Hanuman. They just seek sympathy," said the Congress leader, referring to a recent remark by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.

Gehlot further alleged that the "remote control of the government is with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS)".

(Madhuri Kalal is assistant producer with Zee Hindustan)