BJP's ideology spreads extremism, says Sonia Gandhi

Written by PTI | New Delhi | Updated: Mar 31 2014, 03:18am hrs
Congress chief Sonia Gandhi today launched a scathing attack on Narendra Modi, saying those who don't believe in secular values cannot grasp the spirit of patriotism, and will lead the country to destruction if they get power.

"Some people are beating the drum of patriotism... You tell me if those who don't believe in secular values can grasp the spirit of patriotism No, they can't. They want to grab power for themselves and their people by misleading you," she said.

In her first public meeting in Delhi since the announcement of Lok Sabha polls, Gandhi said patriotism flows in the veins of Congress and one can learn it from the

"sacrifices" made by party leaders.

For her, Gandhi said, the 'ganga-jamuni' tradition, a reference to India's inclusive culture, was more important than power, and people with "bad" intentions could play havoc with this.

"People with bad intention would lead the country and society to destruction and darkness... I have faith in your wisdom. I am sure you won't make any mistake and support Congress," she said.

The BJP's ideology spreads extremism, "divides" society and pits one brother against another while Congress believed in keeping the society together and looks at everybody as one.

"Congress wishes well to even its adversaries," she said.

She termed Lok Sabha polls as the clash between two ideologies and asked people to defeat the BJP's "extremist and divisive ideology".

She highlighted the "historic" work done by the UPA government while seeking mandate for another term.

The Congress president also attacked AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal for "running away from government" after becoming chief minister of Delhi.

Targeting Kejriwal, whose party was mainly responsible for the rout of Congress in Delhi polls last December, Gandhi said some people believed running government was like a "child's play".

"You have seen how they have run away from Delhi," she said.

Wooing Dalits and the poor groups which had largely deserted Congress for AAP in Delhi Assembly polls Gandhi highlighted laws enacted by the UPA government banning manual scavenging and giving legal status to street vendors. "Police

and administration would no longer trouble hawkers," she said.

Reaching out to Muslims, she said UPA government has implemented most of the recommendations of the Sachar Committee.

If voted to power, she said, Congress will provide health security to people and pension to the needy.

Gandhi also said that a number of key bills could not be

passed as the Opposition disrupted Parliament.

"If Parliament had not got stalled, then we would have

got many more important laws passed," she said.