Activities of “gau rakshaks” (cow vigilantes) or views of Hindutva organisations like the RSS should not be taken as the policy of the Narendra Modi government for whom the Constitution is Bible, says Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan. If one has to analyse the performance of the Modi government, then it has to be done on the basis of what it has achieved and not by “elements and atmospherics outside”, Paswan told IANS over the telephone from London in a chat on three years of the government. Paswan, who is London for a medical check-up relating to a problem of occasional breathlessness, has dismissed criticism by detractors that the Muslim community has been pushed to the status of second-class citizens.
“Muslims have faith in Prime Minister Narendra Modi because he has said the only religion for him is the Constitution which provides for equality and a life of honour and dignity for all communities irrespective of the religion. “Modi talks only of development. He never talks of religion, article 370, Babri Masjid or Ram janambhumi,” Paswan added. Even on triple talaq, the government has said that it will only implement what the Supreme Court would say in its judgment. “We have only said that we will protect the rights of Muslim women in consonance with what the court says in its judgment.”
Asked about the activities of Hindutva fringe elements like the gau rakshaks, who were involved in incidents in which people have been killed for allegedly transporting cows for slaughter, the minister demanded that the state governments act tough against such elements “who break the law in the name of cow protection.” He said that the Centre has made it clear that there will be no goondaism allowed in the name of gau rakshaks.