Dubai: In a veiled attack at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress president Rahul Gandhi, who is in the UAE on a two-day visit, said India has been facing intolerance from the past four and half years.
Addressing the Indian diaspora residing in the UAE, the Congress chief said, "When I met Your Highness Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE, I experienced humility. Great nations are built with that kind of humility. The values that bring together the people of UAE and India are humility and tolerance; tolerance for different ideas, religions, and communities. I am sad to say that back home, it is four and a half years of intolerance."
Continuing his tirade against the Prime Minister Modi-led government in India, the Gandhi scion said, "We can never run a country like India believing that only one idea is correct and all others are wrong. Today, my beloved country India is being divided for political reasons."
While talking about the upcoming 2019 Lok Sabha elections in the country, Rahul said that the Congress party is surely going to win the polls and will unite India again. He also announced on a foreign land that as soon as the Congress comes in power in 2019, the party will give special status to Andhra Pradesh.
"We are going to face an election battle in 2019. I want to assure you that we are going to win that fight and we are going to unite India again. The Congress party's commitment is clear; As soon as we win the election of 2019, we will give special state status to Andhra Pradesh," he added.
Andhra Pradesh was bifurcated into Telangana and the residuary Andhra Pradesh State on June 2, 2014.
Praising the Indian workers in Dubai for making the country proud by their hard work in the UAE, Rahul said, "When I drive through UAE, I see your energy, blood and sweat. You have helped build this nation, and I feel proud that you have played your part with dignity, togetherness and tolerance. Without the help of the NRIs, it would be impossible for India to be where it is today. In the last century, when we stood up and fought the British, the fight was led by an NRI called Mahatma Gandhi."
Appealing to the Indian diaspora living in the UAE to support the Congress to solve problems in India, he said, "I want a commitment from you to stand together with us and solve problems back in India."
Raising concerns over unemployment in India, he said, "We need to take this head-on. We need to show the rest of the world that not only can we beat unemployment, but we can also challenge China."
Rahul, who is on a two-day visit to UAE, also talked about "the Idea of India" in the context of 150 years of Mahatma Gandhi at Dubai International Cricket Stadium, which was jam-packed with Indians.
"Mahatma Gandhi picked up the idea of non-violence from every great religion where it is clearly written that violence will not help you achieve anything," he said.
Ahead of his address, Rahul met with the Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE, HH Sheikh Mohammed.
"The bonds between India & the UAE have stood the test of time. I am committed to helping build an even stronger relationship between our countries," the Gandhi scion tweeted post the meeting.