Union Budget 2019: Congress President Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi sat quietly while Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman went about with her Union Budget 2019 speech in Lok Sabha today. Rahul who reached the parliament ahead of the Finance Minister's maiden budget presentation had indirectly insinuated that the budget has been pro-rich.
When reporters asked if the budget would be "pro-Ambani" or pro-farmers, Gandhi quipped, "That is a good question, it means you have the understanding," ANI reported.
Gandhi who resigned as Congress President Wednesday said that he was no longer the party chief. Taking moral responsibility for the party's poor performance in the Lok Sabha elections, Gandhi had resigned as the Congress president at a CWC meeting on May 25, two days after the results were declared. Gandhi, in a four-page letter, said: "It is an honour for me to serve the Congress Party, who values and ideals have served as the lifehood of our beautiful nation."
He said as the Congress party chief, he was responsible for the loss of the 2019 election. "Accountability is critical for the future growth of our party. It is for this reason that I have resigned as Congress President," he added.
Rahul said rebuilding the party required decisions and numerous people would have to be made accountable for the failure of 2019. "It would be unjust to hold others accountable but ignore my own responsibility as President of the party," said Rahul. The Congress party had faced a major defeat in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections as Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party secured 303 of total 544 seats.
Congress leaders at various levels have been appealing to Gandhi to take back his resignation. Putting an end to speculation that he would be nominating the next Congress chief, Rahul said while it was important for someone new to lead the party, it would not be correct for him to select the person. He also asked the Congress Working Committee to entrust a group of people the task of beginning the search for a new chief.
Reiterating his earlier remarks that he did not hate the BJP but their ideology, Rahul said: "I have no hatred or anger towards the BJP but every living cell in my body instinctively resists their idea of India. This resistance arises because my being is permeated with an India idea that is and has always been in direct conflict with theirs. This is not a new battle; it has been waged on our soil for thousands of years."
Launching a scathing attack on the Modi government, Rahul said the Congress didn't fight a political party in the 2019 election. "Rather, we fought the entire machinery of the India state, every institution of which was marshalled against the opposition. It is now crystal clear that out once cherished institutional neutrality no longer exists in India."