Rahul Gandhi mocks BJP campaign against corruption

Mandya (Karnataka), May 1 (IANS) Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi Wednesday mocked the BJP’s attack on the central government over corruption, saying that the party does not talk about its former chief minister going to jail for graft in Karnataka.

“Yesterday (Tuesday) they spoke in parliament about corruption, but they will not talk about it in Karnataka. They will also not say that a chief minister went to jail (over corruption charges),” Gandhi said here at a rally held as part of the campaign for the May 5 assembly polls in the state.

B.S. Yeddyurappa, the BJP chief minister, was forced to quit in July 2011 over mining bribery charges. He floated the Karnataka Janata Party, which is contesting the assembly elections alone.

Mandya, about 80 km from Bangalore, is considered the stronghold of the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S).

Rahul Gandhi accused the BJP of “mortgaging” Karnataka’s rich natural resources like iron ore to the Reddy brothers and using their money to acquire power in the state.

Of the three Reddy brothers, G. Janardhana Reddy has been in jail for over a year over illegal mining and export charges both in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. His brother, G. Karunakara Reddy, is contesting the assembly poll on a BJP ticket from Harapanahalli in central Karnataka.

The two were ministers in the Yeddyurappa cabinet.

Rahul Gandhi said that Karnataka has lost out on development in the last nine years after the Congress lost power. The last Congress government was in 1999-2004, though the party shared power with the JD-S in 2004-2006.

He said only the Congress could put Karnataka back on the path of all-round development.

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