Updated: May 23, 2023

Smriti Irani warns Rahul Gandhi: Wayanad will suffer the same fate as Amethi if he remains MP

Smriti Irani highlighted that Rahul Gandhi's defeat in Amethi can be attributed to the absence of noticeable progress and development during his tenure as the constituency's Member of Parliament.

Smriti Irani

Smriti Irani and Rahul Gandhi

Taking a jibe at Rahul Gandhi, Union Minister Smriti Irani commented that if he continues to stay in Wayanad, the constituency would experience a fate similar to that of Amethi in Uttar Pradesh during his tenure as its Member of Parliament. Rahul Gandhi previously served as the Member of Parliament for Wayanad before facing conviction and a two-year sentence in a criminal defamation case by a Gujarat court. The Gujarat High Court is currently reviewing his plea for a stay on the conviction.

Ms Irani claimed she had the "good fortune" of being the one who "sent away" Mr Gandhi from Amethi after launching the state-level Women Labour Convention sponsored by the Kerala section of the Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS) in Thiruvananthapuram.

The reason behind that was when he served as an MP from Amethi, 80 percent of the local residents lacked access to electricity connections. Additionally, crucial infrastructure such as the District Collector's office, fire station, medical college, Kendriya Vidyalaya or Sainik School were nonexistent, and the district hospital lacked essential facilities like a dialysis centre or X-ray machine.

However, following his departure, significant progress was made in establishing these facilities and improving the infrastructure in Amethi. Therefore, if he continues to represent Wayanad, it is likely to face similar challenges as Amethi did in the past. Consequently, it is essential for you, the people, to ensure that he does not continue his tenure there," stated the Union Minister for Women and Child Development.

The minister emphasized her deep concern for Wayanad, whether she is in Delhi or Amethi. As a result, she made the decision to transform 250 anganwadis in Wayanad into 'saksham' (capable) anganwadis.

A 'saksham' anganwadi refers to a centrally sponsored scheme aimed at providing a comprehensive package of six services to eligible beneficiaries in anganwadis across different states and Union Territories. These services include supplementary nutrition, pre-school non-formal education, nutrition and health education, immunization, health check-ups, and referral services. By implementing this initiative, the minister intends to enhance the capabilities of anganwadis in Wayanad and ensure the well-being of the beneficiaries.

Ms. Irani also addressed the implementation of several central government schemes, initiatives, and policies in Kerala aimed at ensuring women's safety, financial security, and social welfare for the state's citizens.

Regarding the concern of alleged inadequate women's safety in Kerala, the minister highlighted a recent tragic incident of the unfortunate killing of a young doctor, Vandana Das, in a taluk hospital within the state. She expressed surprise that such an incident occurred despite the presence of police officers in the vicinity.

The minister raised a pertinent question regarding the apparent "lack of intention" on the part of the administration to ensure women's safety in Kerala. She pointed out that despite the implementation of several central government initiatives, such as training personnel to assist cybercrime victims, distributing forensic kits, facilitating the establishment of additional fast-track courts, and providing financial support to strengthen the law and order system, the issue persisted.

The minister stated that when incidents of crimes against women occur in the state, it compels us to question why, despite the provision of central assistance, including financial support, to strengthen the systems, there is a lack of commitment on the part of the state governments to guarantee women's safety.

During the event, Union Minister of State for External Affairs, V Muraleedharan, also expressed a similar perspective regarding the issue of women's safety, particularly in their workplaces. He pointed out that the practice of "night walks," where women gather in large numbers and take to the streets, does not truly indicate or ensure their safety, as they often find themselves having to return home late from work unaccompanied.

Later in the day, both Ms. Irani and Mr. Muraleedharan visited Dr. Das' family at their residence in Muttuchira, located in the Kaduthuruthy area of the Kottayam district. They provided comfort and solace to the grieving parents.

Before leaving, they also paid their respects at the ossuary near the house, which was constructed as a memorial to honour Dr. Das.
Earlier during the day, in her speech, b argued that while the ruling Left Front in the state professes to work for the welfare of the poor, it is actually the Centre that is striving to ensure economic justice and financial security for the people of Kerala. She alleged that the Left merely makes empty claims.

Furthermore, the BJP leader accused the Left front of being notorious for strikes and asserted that their efforts were solely focused on advancing their own political interests.



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