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Pakistani intelligence agencies have approached young Muslim men who lost members of their families in the Muzaffarnagar riots, Rahul Gandhisaid in Indore on Thursday.
“There are 10 to 15 such Mussalman boys whose brothers and sisters were killed in the riots and who were approached by Pakistani agencies,” the Congress vice-president told an election rally, quoting an Indian intelligence officer who met him two days ago.
Rahul accused the BJP of engineering the riots. “The BJP thinks that unless Hindus and Muslims fight in Uttar Pradesh its cause won’t be served, and see what happened. They think they will win elections, without realising the harm it causes to the nation,” he said.
“Yahaan ladaai karvaai gayi hai, yahaan aag lagaayi gayi hai,” Rahul said men, women and children from both the communities had told him in Muzaffarnagar. He repeated the allegation and claim that he made in rallies in Churu and Alwar on Wednesday: that the BJP starts (communal) fires and the Congress douses them.
Rahul mentioned an alleged WikiLeaks revelation about a US diplomat who had claimed that a senior BJP leader had told him that “Hindu nationalism” was an opportunistic slogan raised during elections, only to forgotten later. Rahul did not mention any names.
He said the Congress would keep stressing on harmony and peace because “nafrat” only kills, while “pyaar” can achieve anything.
The Congress vice president also mentioned his family, now a standard reference in his speeches. “He was my hero,” Rahul said of his father Rajiv Gandhi, describing how he watched him get up early and fight his battles daily. “He became PM at 40... he was my hero, like everyone else’s.”
Rahul promised to turn Indore into a commercial hub in 10 years, saying that Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad had progressed because Congress governments had freed the hands of their people.
He narrated the story of a woman whom he had met in a slum in Mumbai, and who had apparently told him how she had fought her battles alone, without help from the government,