Mysuru: Either the students of Maharani’s College were bowled over by Rahul Gandhi or he was won over by the students. Maharani’s Science College in city witnessed a fruitful interaction between the Congress President and over 600 girl students this morning where there were several moments that sent the audience into peals of laughter.
One such moment was when a girl, holding a mike and blushing, openly asked for a selfie with Rahul amidst cheering and howling from other students. The Congress President too blushed and with a broad dimpled grin on his face, climbed down the stage and headed straight to the student and posed for a selfie with her. Seeing this, many other students too scrambled for selfies with the Congress leader.
Security personnel, the SPG and the lady constables had a tough time in convincing the overenthusiastic girls to leave Rahul as he had other programmes to attend. This did not go down well with the students who went on clicking selfies with the Congress President. On his part too, Rahul was obliging and could not say no. The selfie spree continued for almost 15 to 20 minutes and Rahul had to be led away by his security men.
After his visit to Chamundi Hill, Rahul arrived at Maharani’s Science College at 10.15 am. He was accompanied by Chief Minister Siddharamaiah, Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) President Dr. G. Parameshwara, KPCC Working President Dinesh Gundu Rao, Senior leader and former Union Minister Mallikarjuna Kharge, Energy Minister D.K. Shivakumar and MLA Vasu.
The Congress President was received by Principals M. Channabasavegowda (Arts College), Dr. Annegowda (Commerce College) and Udayashankar (Science College). After exchanging pleasantries, Rahul was led to the stage (where coolers were placed on either sides) inside the college where over 600 students had assembled.
It was Rahul’s second such interaction with students of Mysuru. It may be recalled here that Rahul, the then All India Congress Committee General Secretary, had an interaction with students of St. Philomena’s College during his visit to the city on Aug. 13, 2010.
All the students were given identity cards and some students had been given an opportunity to ask over 15 questions. The interaction was held for one hour and Rahul Gandhi replied to each question in detail. Some confusion prevailed at the venue as the sound system malfunctioned and there was no clarity in sound.
Bhavya R. Anchalekar, a B.Sc. final year student had the opportunity of asking the first question where she asked about his vision for young Indians and skilled population. Replying to her, Rahul said that Small Scale Industries had a great scope in the country for its employment generation capacity. “You know what big industrialists and diamond merchants have done to the country by cheating banks and financial institutions,” he said.
Education and Demonetisation
Rahul answered the questions in English. The next student to ask a question was Ayesha who asked the Congress President about Education and demonetisation. Rahul criticised demonetisation and GST and said that both were not needed for India. Rahul questioned Ayesha about her career ambitions and she replied that she wanted to enter the civil services.
Another student Anusha questioned him about why the society was unequal despite the Constitution guaranteeing equality. Rahul said that governments (including Congress) had failed to fully implement equality. Taking a political stand, he said that if Congress comes to power, he will try to implement equality.
Equality and Discrimination
Nethravathi questioned the Congress leader about IITs and H. Lakshmi questioned him about single education policy. Interestingly, Mahadevamma, another student, questioned in Kannada about the discrimination policy followed by the governments. She said that why the benefits doled out by the government were being handed over to only one particular community. As Rahul could not understand Kannada, KPCC President Dr. G. Parameshwara translated the question to English.
Rahul did not answer the question and asked CM Siddharamaiah to answer the question as it was a ‘State Subject’. Answering Mahadevamma, Siddharamaiah justified his government’s steps to achieve equality. Only when the socially deprived citizens get facilities, equality can be achieved in the society, he said.
Seeing Siddharamaiah answering the questions, several students complained that they had not received laptops as promised by him. “You only promised and the laptops are yet to arrive,” a student said. Siddharamaiah assured that in the coming days, all students, irrespective of caste, creed and religion will get laptops in Karnataka.