Agartala: Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Monday alleged central funds to Tripura for development are being diverted to the ruling Communist Party of India (Marxist)'s party fund. "The Centre sent huge amount of money for the state's development but it is diverted to CPI-M party funds. The fund for development, for construction of roads, for MGMNREGA or employment generation all go to that party," he told an election rally in Agartala.
Terming the Left Front government in the state as "anti-people", Gandhi urged people to oust CPI(M) in the February 14 state Assembly polls so that they could enjoy the benefit of good governance. "There is an allegation against Congress that it has an understanding with CPI-M. But we have the understanding of uprooting the CPI-M from power and throwing them out. We have ousted them from Kerala and West Bengal and now time has come to throw them out of Hindusthan," he said.
Gandhi said, "I had asked the driver (of his car) on my way here how are you in the 20 years of Left rule and he replied that nothing would be available unless you are a relative of a CPI-M leader...this partisan government should be voted out if people want the benefits of good governance." Trying to strike a chord with the gathering, he said, "Delhi is not far from your state and do not think that your problems will not be addressed because you are from a small state. All states are equal to us - small or big."
The Congress vice-president alleged that all central funds to Tripura were being diverted to the ruling CPI-M's party fund.
Assuring that all poll pledges of the Congress would be implemented so that poverty in the backward Northeastern state is eradicated, Gandhi said one unemployed in each family would be given a job. Besides, the unemployed would be given subsistence allowance and like all other states, government employees would get a pay structure according to the recommendations of the sixth pay commission.
He if his party is voted to power, it will provide 35 kg rice per family at the rate of Re one per kilo. Earlier, in another campaign rally in Sonamura in West Tripura district, Gandhi asked the people to vote Congress to power for a "direct relation" between Delhi and Tripura for its development.
"There is a government between Delhi and people of Tripura, which eat up all the money for development. We want to set up a direct relation between the people of Tripura and Delhi, which is possible if you bring in Congress at the helm of affairs here," he said. For the Congress, people came first and then the party, while for the CPI-M, party is their priority and people are secondary, he said. Tripura has been under the Left Front rule for two decades now and if it wins this time, it will be its fifth straight term in power.