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Rahul Gandhi Attacks BJP, RSS for “Preaching Violence, Hatred,” Modi Terms it “Insult to all Hindus”

Rahul Gandhi Attacks BJP, RSS for “Preaching Violence, Hatred,” Modi Terms it “Insult to all Hindus”

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Manas Dasgupta

NEW DELHI, July 1: The first day of the Congress leader Rahul Gandhi functioning as the leader of the opposition in the Lok Sabha witnessed a stormy debate and heated exchanges with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other senior ministers after he attacked the BJP and the RSS not to be “true Hindus” as they always talked about “violence and hatred.”

Taking his attack as an “insult to all the Hindus,” the Prime minister and other BJP ministers demanded from Mr Gandhi an “apology” to the House and the country for hurting the feelings of crores of people who “take pride in identifying themselves as Hindus.”

Taking a swipe at the ruling BJP saying that those who call themselves Hindus are engaged in “violence and hate” round the clock instantly  drawing massive protests from the members of the treasury benches with Mr Modi asserting that calling the entire Hindu society violent was a serious matter.

In a fiery speech in the Lower House, Mr Gandhi — armed with a copy of the Constitution and pictures of religious icons — launched a sharp attack on the ruling BJP, saying: “All our great men have spoken about non-violence and finishing fear…But, those who call themselves Hindu only talk about violence, hatred, untruth… Aap Hindu ho hi nahi…”

An irate prime minister interjected the Congress MP and said his statement had “hurt Hindu sentiments.” “Calling the entire Hindu community violent is a very serious matter,” he said to which Gandhi retorted that he was only talking about the BJP and RSS and “the BJP and the RSS are not the entire Hindu society.”

Continuing his attack, the Congress leader held up a picture of Lord Shiva and said his message was about fearlessness and non-violence. He also emphasised that all religions talk about courage. Citing Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism to underline the importance of fearlessness, he said “All religions and all our great men talk about non-violence and fearlessness, but those who call themselves Hindus only talk about violence, hatred and falsehood…. Aap Hindu ho hi nahi (You are not Hindus),” he said.

The Congress leader accused the BJP of launching systematic attacks on the Constitution and the fundamental idea of India, noting that millions of people have resisted the ideas proposed by the ruling party. Mr Gandhi began his speech by claiming a “full-scale and systematic assault on the idea of India… the Constitution… and on people who resisted the attack on the Constitution.” Many opposition leaders were “personally attacked”, the Congress leader thundered and said “some are still in jail.”

The reference seemed to be to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, whose Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is part of the Congress-led INDIA opposition bloc. Mr Kejriwal is in Delhi’s Tihar Jail over his arrest in the liquor policy case. “If you look at Lord Shiva’s image you know Hindus can never spread fear and hatred… but the BJP spreads fear and hatred 24×7,” Mr Gandhi said. “I was attacked on the orders of Prime Minister Modi. There were 20-plus cases (against me), (my) house was taken away, 55 hours of interrogation by the ED,” Mr Gandhi said.

Despite these challenges, he said he feels proud of the collective effort to protect the Constitution. “It feels nice that BJP people are now repeating ‘Jai Samvidhan‘ after me,” he said. Mr Gandhi also expressed his contentment at being in the Opposition. “I am happy and proud to be in the Opposition. For us, there is something more than power, it is the truth,” he said.

The Congress MP’s diatribe triggered a massive uproar in the House as MPs of both sides raised slogans and many, including Union Home Minister Amit Shah, demanded an apology from Gandhi. “He doesn’t know that crores of Indians in this country called themselves Hindu with pride. Is he trying to say that each one of them speaks about violence? You cannot associate violence with any religion. I demand he apologises.” Shah also spoke of the Emergency and 1984 anti-Sikhs riots to hit back at Gandhi, saying he has no right to talk about non-violence when the Congress had spread “terror” in the country.

BJP chief JP Nadda, who is the leader of the House in the Rajya Sabha and the union health minister, took aim at Mr Gandhi with a series of posts on X, in which he accused the Congress leader of having “blatantly lied.” Third-time fail LoP has a knack for agitated, flawed logic. His speech today has shown that neither has he understood the mandate of 2024 (his third successive loss) nor does he have any humility.”

“Rahul Gandhi must immediately apologise to all Hindus for terming them ‘violent.’ This is the same person who was telling foreign diplomats Hindus are terrorists. Intrinsic hate to Hindus must stop.” “Leader of the Opposition is now a five-time MP but has not learnt Parliamentary norms and does not understand civility. Time and again he reduces the levels of discourse. His utterances towards the Chair today were in very poor taste. He owes and apology…” Mr Nadda raged.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman also trained her guns on Gandhi. Taking to social networking site X, she said: “Sheer audacity of LoP @RahulGandhi to call everyone who calls himself Hindu as “hinsak”/violent shows @INCIndia’s hatred and contempt towards Hindus. Also consistent with Hindu hate of his INDI Alliance partners. Hypocrisy in claiming “Mohabbat ki Dukaan” exposed.”

Union minister G Kishan Reddy also slammed Gandhi on X. “The self-proclaimed defender of the Constitution and the electoral Hindu has revealed his true colours. His statement, labelling Hindus as a violent community, exposes Rahul Gandhi’s and Congress’ anti-Hindu agenda. This is not the first time Congress has insulted Hindus; earlier, they insulted Sanatana Dharma, and now, a direct attack on Hindus. This is utterly shameful, disgraceful and demeaning. I strongly condemn the statement of Rahul Gandhi and he should apologize to the entire Hindu community.”

Speaking outside the Parliament, Rahul Gandhi’s sister and Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi said his brother did not say anything about Hindus. “My brother can never insult Hindus. He was referring to the BJP and BJP leaders,” she said.




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