New Delhi: Hitting out at RSS and BJP, some Congress leaders on Saturday accused them of turning India into a "neo-fascist" state and questioned whether they will give up their idea of a 'Hindu Rashtra' if they believe in the Constitution.
Speaking during a national seminar 'Contribution of Dr Ambedkar', organised by Rajiv Gandhi Study Circle here, a party leader also sought to underscore that India was not a neo-fascist state during the earlier NDA regime led by Atal Bihari Vajpayee, but claimed, it was now, a remark apparently targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The leaders also questioned hailing of Ambedkar by right wing outfits as they claimed the saffron organisations were always opposed to the ideology of the Constitution architect.
"What is the context of deliberating Dr Ambedkar's birth anniversary? I should say and I had said this in Parliament, today we are a neo-fascist Indian state. Fascism developed after Second World War is known as neo-fascism.
"Today, unfortunately, I don't mind, political parties come and go... Vajpayee also belonged to the (same) BJP which Modi is leading currently. But none could say India was a neo-fascist state during his (Vajpayee's) rule between 1999 and 2004, but it is now," former Rajya Sabha member Bhalchandra Mungekar said.
He noted BJP is the "only party" talking about Ambedkar without subscribing to his ideology.
He also noted the ruling party saying that purchasing Ambedkar's house in London is not "sufficient", but there is a need to follow his ideology.
Asserting that Ambedkar believed in "removing contradictions" from the country, Congress general secretary Mukul Wasnik targeted BJP and questioned how "those believing in inequalities" will be able to do justice to the former's ideology.
"Those who claim they believe in Constitution, can they say they will give up the idea of a Hindu Rashtra? Whether the BJP, RSS, Bajrang Dal people will say we believe in the Constitution and will give up Hindu Rashtra concept? I don't think any of their leaders will say this," Wasnik said.
During his speech, Wasnik also maintained Ambedkar's ideology is the "only hope" for people in the current political context and said the same shall remain "relevant" until there are inequalities in the country.
The seminar, organised as part of Ambedkar's 125th birth anniversary celebrations, was also attended by former Union minister Oscar Fernandes and ex-Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot (also chairman of the Circle) among others.