Sonia asks people to decide who is strong

April 18th, 2009 - 8:51 pm ICT by IANS  

Sonia Gandhi Hyderabad, April 18 (IANS) Congress president Sonia Gandhi once again took on Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader L.K. Advani, saying he can’t take decisions on his own.
Without naming either Advani or Rashtriya Sweyamsevak Sangh (RSS), Gandhi said he had to quit as party president on the direction of a particular organisation.

She was a addressing a public meeting at Pangidi in West Goadavari district of Andhra Pradesh as part of the campaign for the second phase of elections.

“Some people are spreading hatred for their own selfish goals. These people accuse us of being soft towards terrorists but the whole country knows that we never bowed to terrorism nor will we do it in future,” she said.

“These people are targeting our Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. They say he can’t take decisions on his own. But can these people take decisions on their own? For every decision, they follow the directions of a particular organisation.”

“It is because of the anger of this organisation and on the order of this organisation that the strong leader had to quit the post of party president. So you decide who is a strong leader,” she told the crowd.

Gandhi was referring to Advani’s resignation as the BJP president following the row over his remarks praising Mohammed Ali Jinnah during his visit to Pakistan.

“The Congress does not follow directions of any organisation. It follows only the directions of people,” she said.

She said for some people secularism, social justice and public welfare are mere slogans but for the Congress these are principles of life.

“India is a country of unity in diversity. We have to take all with us. Those who had fewer opportunities should get more opportunities. The Congress has taken up a programme for the upliftment of all sections of society and we need your support,” she said while seeking another term for the Congress both in the state and at the centre.

She listed out the steps taken Congress-led UPA government during the last five years and praised the Rajasekhara Reddy government of the state for its initiatives.

Polling for 20 Lok Sabha and 150 assembly constituencies in Andhra Pradesh will be held in the second phase on April 23.

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