Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Rahul Gandhi faces ire for remark on poverty

New Delhi: Wednesday, Aug 07, 2013(7STARNEWS)Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi waded into a fresh controversy after he remarked at a meeting in Allahabad on Monday that "poverty is just a state of mind".

"Poverty is just a state of mind. It does not mean the scarcity of food, money or material things. If one possesses self-confidence, then one can overcome poverty," Gandhi said while participating in a discourse on 'Culture, Deepening Democracy and Most Marginalised Communities' in Allahabad on Monday.

The Congress leader, in an attempt to reinforce his argument, put forth an example of a poor woman in Amethi, who "redeemed her self-esteem" by getting associated with a self-help group called Rajiv Gandhi Mahila Vikas Pariyojana.

Gandhi was accompanied by party general secretary Madhusudhan Mistry. Political parties reacted sharply to Gandhi's comment, with Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal saying the Congress vice-president was yet to understand India and its people.

"The statement itself was a reflection of the mindset of Rahul who is yet to understand India and its people," the Punjab deputy CM said.

BSP leader Naseemuddin Siddiqqui said, "He comes from a billionaire family and many generations in the Gandhi-Nehru family have not seen poverty even from a distance. So they cannot be blamed for their poor knowledge."

Vijay Bahadur Pathak, BJP spokesperson in UP, said "Gandhi's statement is arrogant and mocks the poor." The remark went viral on Twitter on Tuesday, with a barrage of tweets targeting the Congress vice-president.
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