Baghel’s rabri against culture’s jibe revived

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While welfare schemes can be dubbed revri, loan waivers for industrialists hand out rabri, says CM Bhupesh Baghel

While welfare schemes can be dubbed revri, loan waivers for industrialists hand out rabri, says CM Bhupesh Baghel

In the midst of the ongoing debate over relivedi.e. handing out gifts for votes, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel said on Saturday that loan waivers for industrialists amounted to handing out ” rabri” for them.

“I want to ask when we give loan waivers to our farmers here, you call them relived but when loans amounting to ten trillion rupees are canceled for ten industrialists, i.e. rabri served to them,” the chief minister said, referring to the popular Indian milk-based dessert.

Mr Baghel was addressing a rally after the inauguration of Khairagarh-Chhuikhadan-Gandai district as the 31st district of the state. Listing some of the social protection measures taken by his Congress government, he questioned the logic of labeling these measures as relived.

“When we buy paddy at ₹2,500 a quintal or pay ₹7,000 every year to laborers, it is called relivedhe said, pointing out that other programs offering subsidies on electricity bills or free education for children were also ridiculed as such.

In July, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said there were [State] governments engaging in relived culture to get votes. Since then, representatives of several state governments led by parties other than Mr. Modi’s Bharatiya Janata party have criticized the statement in various forums, while some have even pointed to the various subsidy programs in the states led by the BJP.

Mr Baghel himself spoke out against any suggestion to reduce this alleged saw again.

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