Politics in UP more about caste, less about development, says Rahul

Rahul Gandhi at Newada village in Azamgarh district on Friday

On second day of his visit to Eastern UP, AICC General Secretary Rahul Gandhi again criticised the state government for "misappropriation" of Central funds and political parties in the state for promoting caste politics in the past two decades.

On his way to Ballia from Mau, where he had stayed a night before, Rahul diverted his cavalcade towards Azamgarh district and visited Newada village known for manufacturing "Banarasi sari".

He spent over one-and-a-half hours with villagers, discussed their problems and sought their opinion on implementation of the Rs 3000 crore package for weavers announced in this year's Union Budget. He also assured them of arranging a meeting for their delegation on the issue with concerned officers in Delhi.

Eastern UP has a considerable population of weavers and despite declaration of about Rs 3000 crore package for the community in the recent Union Budget, the Central government is yet to formulate guidelines about its implementation. Sources said this has led to the discontent among the weavers as they have not received the benefits of the package widely publicised by the Congress. Rahul's chaupal and his promise to arrange a meeting on package implementation are seen as attempts to woo the community.

In Newada, after the chaupal, Rahul visited the house of a local weaver - Faizan. He took his breakfast at Faizan's house and saw how his loom worked. He also interacted with the women of the house about their role in preparation of the final product

Later in the day, Rahul reached Ballia and interacted with the potential Youth Congress candidates. In his address, he criticised the state government for its "failure" to properly utilise the funds meant for Central schemes like MGNREGA, NRHM and Bundelkhand package.

During his address, Rahul also blamed the political parties in the state for ignoring development and giving more emphasis on caste politics. He said the sate has suffered because of this.

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