100 days of NDA: Rise in communal incidents a worry, says Congress

Congress on Monday charged that there has been a rise in communal incidents in the country during the NDA coalition's first 100 days in power even as it questioned Prime Minister Narendra Modi's "silence" over the matter.

New Delhi: Congress on Monday charged that there has been a rise in communal incidents in the country during the NDA coalition's first 100 days in power even as it questioned Prime Minister Narendra Modi's "silence" over the matter.

"In the first 100 days, the most worrying factor is the way in which communal tension has not risen but rather has been made to rise," senior Congress leader Manish Tewari said here today.

He said that after the BJP-led government had assumed power, statements regarding Article 370 and Uniform Civil Code had appeared aimed at undermining communal peace.

Further, talking about the 'Love Jihad' controversy, Tewari said, "I still can't understand who can make the words 'love' and 'jihad' part of the same expression. But for communal polarisation, government has been very successful in doing that.

"In the middle of all this, the silence of the prime minister... The meaning of that silence is that somewhere down the line, there is encouragement from the government to these organisations," Tewari said at an event here to review the 100 days of the NDA government organised by the 'Wada na Todo Abhiyan'.

"We are very concerned that this is not related to any elections. It is not that communal tension is being fanned because there are elections in Maharashtra, Haryana.

"It is an effort being made in a very organised manner to change the basic identity of this country... The idea of India," Tewari said.

Speaking at the event, AAP's Reena Gupta charged that a phenomenon of "outsourcing of communalism" was being witnessed under the new regime.

"The new government is not monitoring black marketeers and hoarders, so inflation continues to be high. It is doing worse as far as environmental issues are concerned," Gupta alleged.

Another speaker, Devinder Sharma, a food policy analyst, said there was no drastic change in the economic policies of the previous UPA and the present NDA regimes.

PV Rajgopal of Ekta Parishad, meanwhile, alleged that the issue of land acquisition had gone backwards under the NDA government and there was concentration of power in one hand, which is not healthy for any democracy.

In an apparent reference to Modi, Tewari said that 2014

was "India's Rockefeller moment" as, for the first time, the industrial sector of the country bet openly not on a party but on an individual.

"One will see that the concerns will increase. Because those who have bet on him and to whom promises were made, they would want the fulfilment of their promises," Tewari said.

Tewari said that as far as the instruments of information dissemination were concerned, these are completely in the hands of the industrial houses of the country.

He said that although there might have been many shortcomings in the previous UPA government, it had made an effort to see to it that the basic structure was geared towards ensuring that the poor, too, can benefit from the policies of the government.

Referring to the NDA government's engagement with neighbouring countries, Tewari said, "I don't want to go into what the government policy has been for China or Pakistan as in the last 100 days... But the view of this government could not be clear and the long-term effect of that is going to fall on India's national security."

Tewari said there would be development in the country if there was communal harmony and peace, "otherwise, we will go backwards and whatever we are seeing in Pakistan today... It will start happening here as well".

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