The BJP hit out at the opposition saying it was “hypocrisy” to talk about composite heritage but remain silent over the killing of RSS workers in Kerala allegedly by CPI-M workers. Taking a dig at Rahul Gandhi, Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the Congress vice president’s observations are more of a “political cry” arising out of a deep sense of dismay as to why he and his party are being rejected by the people of the country. He also questioned the silence of “so-called liberal intellectuals” on the killings of RSS workers in Kerala, who had gone on an “Award Wapasi” spree earlier. Earlier in the day, Rahul took part in the ‘Sanjhi Virasat Bachao’ (save country’s composite heritage) hosted by rebel JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav, in which former prime minister Manmohan Singh and other senior Congress members as well as Left party leaders, including CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury and CPI leader D Raja, also took part.
Rahul had also hit out at the government for not being able to keep its promises while targetting the RSS. “I have a question on the talk of composite heritage (‘sanjhi virasat’) which is going on today. RSS workers in Kerala’s Kannur are being allegedly killed by CPI-M workers, which heritage is that,” Prasad asked. “The organisers of composite heritage – Congress, Left and Sharad Yadav are sitting together, how do they consider the merciless killing of RSS workers in Kannur in Kerala by CPI-M workers and their goons. Is it part of the composite heritage of India? This is hypocrisy,” he said. He said, “Does Rahul Gandhi speak about it (Killings in Kerala?) Where are Delhi’s so-called liberal intellectuals who were doing ‘Award Wapasi’? Today RSS workers are being killed by CPI-M goons, why are the liberal intellectuals silent now?” he asked. Union minister Arun Jaitley had also recently met family members of a slain RSS functionary, a victim of political violence in Kerala. He claimed that those talking about composite heritage are a coalition of “failed people” and they will keep on failing in the future.
He said he was “intrigued” by Rahul’s remark that on the one hand, there are those who loot the country and on the other, there are those who give to the nation. “People have removed from power those who looted the country. Your party is also there. But today, one thing was clear by his comments. Rahul Gandhi does not give a speech, he cries,” Prasad said. Taking a dig at Sharad Yadav, he said “The person whose entire politics started at the feet of JP, and opposing the Congress, is feeling happy today sitting beside Rahul Gandhi”. He said “this is a coalition of people who are in fear of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP. This is also a coalition of those who have done corruption and now action is being taken”. Prasad said there were local body elections in Madhya Pradesh where BJP gave a good performance. “In West Bengal, there were local body elections in seven places, all were won by Trinamool but BJP came second everywhere. There was no sign of the Left. “I want to congratulate the team of MP and WB and say keep it up. Where is the Left? It was found that Left was sitting at composite heritage (conference),” he said. To a question, he said Rahul has silenced everybody in the Congress to such an extent that despite his party’s loss every time under him, nobody dares to ask him any question.
On Kashmir, he said the government is taking “very firm measures” against the terrorists and separatists and probing their funding pattern. “That shall continue. But the larger commitment for Kashmir by the prime minister was outlined in his August 15 speech,” he said. Modi during his Independence Day speech had reached out to strife-hit Kashmiris, saying abuses and bullets will not resolve their problems but embracing them will. Prasad said that the most objectionable comment by Rahul today was that BJP is packing the judiciary and the media with its own people and will change the Constitution. “I would expect Rahul Gandhi not to make motivated political comment about the judiciary. India’s judiciary is independent and we all respect it.
They are left with no issues and out of their political fear they are saying these things. I appeal to them not to not drag the judiciary”. Prasad said Rahul’s grandmother had spoken about committed judiciary during the times of Emergency. “The political training of Rahul and the political heritage of Rajiv Gandhi have been very unclear as far as independence of judiciary is concerned. They talk of committed judiciary in the 70s when Emergency was there. “I condemn these utterly irresponsible comments of Rahul concerning the judiciary and media. The Narendra Modi government fully respects the independence of judiciary and fully upholds the independence of media,” he added.