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The Time Has Come To Usher in Another Green Revolution: Rahul Gandhi

Then Gandhi raised the slogan "Chowkidaar chor hai" and the crowd repeated after him

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Rahul Gandhi. Wikimedia

Rahul Gandhi made the announcement while kicking off the party’s Lok Sabha election campaign in Rajasthan at a ‘Kisan Rally’ where he again hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the Rafale jet deal.

He announced that the Congress government in the state shall start food processing units near farmers’ land.

“We aim to connect our crops globally. We need a new strategy in this direction. So there is a need to bring another Green Revolution (Harit Kranti).

“In fact, the Congress shall do it. We have decided to start food processing units near farms where farmers are sowing their crops,” he said, adding he had already spoken to Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Congress state President Sachin Pilot.

He also said that Modi would have to waive loans of Indian farmers. “Or else, the Congress shall do it after coming to power.”

Gandhi reiterated that waiving loans will not solve the problems of farmers but it was the first step to help poor farmers. “We will help farmers with new technology.”

The Congress President praised the farmers of Rajasthan for showing their might to Modi by forming a Congress government in the state.

“The Assembly elections have shown farmers’ strength to Modi. Now is the time when India’s farmers and youths should bat on the front foot without getting scared and hit sixers.

"He can throw up a serious challenge to the Bharatiya Janata Party in 2019," the Sena cautioned in an editorial in the party mouthpieces "Saamana" and "Dopahar Ka Saamana".
It’s time to usher in another Green Revolution, says Rahul, Wikipedia

“In fact, Modi has been playing on the back foot after making promises for the past four and a half years,” he said, using cricketing analogy.

“Our Prime Minister promises employment, jobs, loan waiver but when his batting turn comes, he gets scared and goes on the back foot.

“Modi promised jobs, but instead he brought in demonetisation and GST which hampered small businesses and resulted in losses for farmers.

“Further, he gave our money to his friend (in the Rafale deal).”

Gandhi said that Modi boasts about his 56-inch chest but he could not gather courage to come to the Lok Sabha even for a minute. “He ran away to a Punjab university. In fact, his Minister Nirmala Sitharaman spoke for two and a half hours.

“Chaukidar ne chori ki hai aur chaowkidaar dar ke baag gaya” (The watchman committed theft and ran away scared).

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Then Gandhi raised the slogan “Chowkidaar chor hai” and the crowd repeated after him.

On this occasion, he asked the public to share their pain with Congress Ministers in Rajasthan. “Tell us your Mann ki Baat. We shall not tell our Mann ki Baat but will listen to your suggestions.”

He warned Rajasthan Ministers that he should not get any complaint against them. “My first priority is the people here and then come party workers.” (IANS)

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Brazil’s President Bolsonaro Faces First Defeat in Congress

The defeat on the floor of the house came one day after Bolsonaro fired a senior minister amid a scandal.

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Jair Bolsonaro, Brazil
Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro arrives at the inauguration ceremony of the new president of the Parliamentary Front of Agriculture (FPA), at the Clube Naval, in Brasilia, Jan. 19, 2019. VOA

Brazil’s lower chamber handed right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro his first defeat in Congress on Tuesday, the day before his government presents its most important legislative proposal to rein in a gaping budget deficit and spur growth.

The house voted overwhelmingly to suspend an executive order by the Bolsonaro government that altered Brazil’s freedom of information law to broaden the number of officials allowed to designate data and documents as secret or ultra-secret.

Lawmakers voted 367 to 57 to fast-track a bill overturning the secrecy measure and government whips were unable to muster votes to avoid defeat.

The bill must still be voted on by the Senate, but the reversal showed that Bolsonaro, who took office on Jan. 1, has not yet been able to organize a coalition in Congress to back his legislative agenda.

On Wednesday, Bolsonaro will send to Congress his plan to overhaul Brazil’s generous and costly pension system that eats up more than half of federal spending and is the main factor behind an unsustainable budget deficit.

Brazil, Bolsonaro
FILE – Gustavo Bebianno in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Sept. 29, 2018. VOA

Approval of pension reform is vital for the recovery of investor confidence in Latin America’s largest economy.

The defeat on the floor of the house came one day after Bolsonaro fired a senior minister amid a scandal involving campaign financing for some of his party’s congressional candidates in the October elections.

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The ousted minister, Gustavo Bebianno, was instrumental in getting Bolsonaro elected but had a run-in with one of the president’s sons, triggering the weeks-old government’s first cabinet crisis.

In a note to clients, analysts at Eurasia Group said the scandal indicated the administration’s political team was in disarray, but they still expected the pension reform to get passed, albeit in a less ambitious version. (VOA)