Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Monday launched a scathing attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), saying the mindset of the ruling party is to divide the nation. Terming the BJP as anti-Dalit, the Gandhi scion said that “BJP’s mindset is to crush Dalits and minorities”.
When asked about Dalit BJP MPs, including Udit Raj, tweeting against Modi government’s approach towards members of Dalit community, Rahul Gandhi said, “They (BJP MPs) have taken to Twitter now. But they have even told us that Modi ji is anti-Dalit and has no place in his heart for them”. He added, “We will stand against them not just today but always”.
The Congress president made the statement while speaking to mediapersons on the sidelines of a fast organised by the party at Rajghat in national capital. The ‘protect communal harmony’ fast event at Rajghat saw some of the top leaders of Congress, including former Delhi CM Sheila Dikshit, Delhi Congress chief Ajay Maken and Arvinder Singh Lovely, among others.
However, the event also invited its share of controversies. While initially there was a controversy over Congress leader Jagdish Tytler, who has been named in connection with the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, being asked to leave the stage, later there was social media uproar over a photograph of Congress leaders eating Chhole Bhature at a restaurant in Delhi earlier on Monday.
On Jagdish Tytler issue, the party said that some leaders were asked to leave the stage as they did not meet the “criteria”. Congress Delhi unit chief Ajay Maken told reporters that only party office bearers and former ministers were supposed to join the Congress president on the stage for the fast, adding that “some leaders who did not meet the criteria were asked to leave”.
Even before the dust could settle over the issue, former Delhi chief minister Madan Lal Khurana’s son and BJP leader Harish Khurana shared on Twitter a picture of Congress leaders, including Ajay Maken, Haroon Yusuf and Arvinder Singh Lovely, eating at a restaurant in New Delhi.
Reacting to it, Congress leader Lovely said that the photograph was clicked before 8 am. "This is symbolic fast from 10.30 am to 4.30pm, it is not indefinite hunger strike," he said.
Lovely further attacked the BJP saying, "This is what is wrong with these (BJP) people. Instead of properly running the country, they concentrate on what we eat."