Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Friday reached out to the Indian expatriates during his maiden visit to the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Praising the UAE for declaring 2019 as the 'Year of Tolerance', Gandhi said that he is sad that back home it is four and a half years of intolerance. “The values that bring together the people of UAE and India are humility and tolerance; tolerance for different ideas, religions, and communities. I'm sad to say that back home it is four and a half years of intolerance,” Gandhi said in a veiled attack to the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government.
The values that bring together the people of UAE and India are humility and tolerance; tolerance for different ideas, religions and communities. I'm sad to say that back home it is four and a half years of intolerance: Congress President @RahulGandhi #RahulGandhiInDubai pic.twitter.com/7HRc0v7BeE— Congress (@INCIndia) January 11, 2019
Gandhi said that India cannot be strong if it is divided and it is being divided for political reasons and benefits. "Once again, we have to bring India together regardless of ideologies and thinking. Once again we have to bring India together, its people, religions, and casts. I want a commitment from you to stand together with us and solve problems back in India,” Gandhi said.
He also took a jibe at the BJP's 'Congress-mukt Bharat slogan and said, "We don't need a 'BJP-mukt Bharat'. We want an India where every citizen says he is an Indian first and then the rest".
Earlier, Gandhi interacted with the Indian workers at Jebel Ali industrial area and enquired about their problems.
"I have come here to tell you that I stand by you. You leave your families behind in India, you all toil hard to earn for your families. I am here to assure you that we are with you... I am here to listen to your problems. Whatever help we can extend, we are ready," he said amid loud applause.
He also announced that as soon as Congress government come to power, it will give special status to Andhra Pradesh. "We will give special category status to Andhra Pradesh. It's the first thing we will do after coming to power in 2019," Gandhi said.