Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, who has aggressively targeted the Narendra Modi government on the worsening agrarian situation since his return from leave, flagged Agriculture Minister O P Dhankar's remarks to attack the Centre on the issue once again.
    
"Committing suicide is a crime, according to Indian law. Any person who commits suicide escapes from his responsibilities and leaves the burden on his wife and innocent children and such people are cowards," Dhankar, a former chief of the BJP's Kisan Cell, said yesterday.
    
When he was asked about com0pensation to kin of farmers who committed suicide, the Minister said, "An institution like government cannot stand behind cowards (those committing suicides) and cannot be with a criminal."
    
Rahul, who has been reaching out to the vast farming community ever since his return from a sabbatical, making a pitch against the land acquisition bill and targeting the Modi government over the agrarian crisis, slammed Dhankar for his "insensitive" remarks.
    
"Your minister in Haryana now says that farmers who commit suicide are cowards. You did not help them when their crops were affected by hailstorm, the farmers bore it. You ended their bonus, they bore it. You did not give them fertilisers, they were lathicharged, but they bore it and now their produce is lying in the markets," Gandhi said in Lok Sabha.
    
Former Union Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia termed the Minister's remarks as a "black spot" and a "blemish" that showed the "real face" of BJP.
    
"Coming from a responsible person like a minister about those who feed us....the comments are a black spot, a blemish. This also reflects cruelty and the real face of BJP," Scindia said.

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