New Delhi : The Congress on Monday unleashed a scathing attack on the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), accusing it of being hell bent on changing the Constitution of India. In a video released on microblogging site Twitter, the Congress claimed quoted several RSS ideologues on their opinion about the Constitution.
The video starts with Union Minister Anantkumar Hegde saying that the BJP has come to power to amend the Constitution. This statement by Hegde had sparked a huge war of words between the Congress and BJP. He had said, “Seculars do not know what their blood is. Yes constitution has given that right to say ‘we are secular and we will say it’. Yes, I know but constitution has been amended many times, we will also amend it. We have come to power for that.”
According to the Congress, Hegde is just following the legacy of RSS. And to assert the point, the video further quotes RSS ideologue Golwalkar as saying, “There is no Indian percepts or political philosophy in the Indian Constitution”.
The video also carries a quote by Jansangh founder Deendayal Upadhyay on the issue of the word “secular” in Constitution. According to the quote, the Jansangh founder had said, “By declaring Bharat as secular nation, the soul of Bharat has been attacked. A secular state is full of woes.”
The opposition party has, in the video, also talked about the Venkatchaliah Commission, constituted by then NDA government in 2000 to review the Constitution. The commission had faced widespread protests from different sections of the society, says the Congress.
It also raked up a 2015 advertisement carrying Preamble of the Constitution by the BJP wherein words “secular” and “socialists” were missing.
Another highlight of the video is a quote by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath wherein he says that no system can be secular and that those “who gave birth to this word and who use it should apologise”. “I believe that after Independence, the biggest lie in India is the word secular,” Yogi is quoted as saying.
“BJP is uncomfortable with many parts of the Constitution” such as socialist, secular, Article 25 (Right to Freedom of Religion), Article 30 (Right of minorities to set up educational institutions) and Article 370 on Jammu and Kashmir, alleges the Congress in the video. It further points that these “mostly constitute the basic structure of our Constitution”.
There has been no reaction from the BJP on the video so far.
‘Mahagathbandhan’ club of ‘nawabs of negativity’: Jaitley
Mumbai: The opposition “mahagathbandhan” (grand alliance) is a club of “nawabs of negativity” and the only glue of this diverse grouping is its opposition to one man (Narendra Modi), Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said.
People of an aspirational society which is politically conscious will not buy into this “suicidal” alternative, the senior BJP leader said.
“The nawabs of negativity may come together but that is not something that will carry credibility as far as people are concerned,” Jaitley said, speaking via video link at the CNBC-TV18 India Business Leadership Awards event. During the video call, Jaitley also spoke about the Union Budget.
This was the first time Jaitley, now in the US for medical treatment, addressed a gathering since leaving the country on Tuesday.
The setback the ruling BJP suffered in Assembly elections in three heartland states recently (Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan) has enthused some opposition leaders about the likely electoral success of such an alternative.
The “mahagathbandhan” has neither the ideological cohesiveness nor a common programme aimed at building the country or an individual leader, Jaitley said.
As against the BJP’s strengths of leadership, decisiveness, performance and potential, the point being put forward by the opposition is of arithmetic, Jaitley highlighted.
In politics, it is not the arithmetic but chemistry which succeeds, he added.
“The premise is that we have politics which is negative in character and the negative politics is we want one man (Narendra Modi) out. On that negativity of wanting one man out, they (Opposition) have come together,” Jaitley said.
Arun Jaitley also said there is a need to elevate the political debate in the run up to the elections and stressed that we cannot afford a “sloganised political debate” where emotional cries take over sound policy.
Without mentioning the promise of farm loan waivers, which the opposition Congress is pitching for, the minister said “sloganised policies” never help the larger interest of the economy and it is the country’s aspirations which will receive a setback in the process.
Govt compromising national security, why 36 Rafale jets instead of 126: Chidambaram
New Delhi: Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Friday accused the government of compromising national security and asked why it bought only 36 Rafale fighter jets instead of 126 required by the Air Force.
His comments come in the wake of fresh revelations on the Rafale deal in a media report which claimed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to but 36 aircraft instead of the 126 asked for by the Air Force pushed the price of each jet up by 41.42 per cent.
“In the light of new facts and revelations in THE HINDU, the question gains greater urgency: why did the government buy only 36 Rafale aircraft instead of 126 aircraft required by the Air Force?,” Chidambaram asked in a tweet.
“The Government has compromised national security by denying to the Air Force the 7 squadrons (126 aircraft) that it desperately needs,” he said.
Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia also took to Twitter to demand answers from Modi on the increased cost of aircraft. “The PM’s unilateral decision to buy 36 Rafales resulted in a price escalation of 41.42 per cent per jet. When will the prime minister answer? he asked.
No war, but soldiers are dying on borders: Bhagwat
Nagpur: RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat said requisite steps need to combat killings on the border, as soldiers are being martyred sans a war-like situation in the country.
“In our country, there is no war at the moment, still people (soldiers) are getting martyred…Because we are not doing our jobs properly. We need to make efforts in this regard. If we want our country to reach the top, then we all should learn to sacrifice,” he said at a gathering here on Thursday.
Furthermore, Bhagwat said the responsibility of safeguarding the country should not be solely shouldered by the Forces.
“Everybody has to make efforts in this regard. This is not something for which we can give a contract to somebody. We keep thinking that the government will do it or the army will do it, the police will do it, but it’s not like that, the entire society has to make efforts,” he opined.
Citing the example of Israel, Bhagwat noted: “If one looks closely, after 70 long years, those countries in comparison with India have done better in terms of growth and development. Israel is a classic example. The natives were weed out before the 19 c. But citizens there gradually came back to their country and started their businesses, trade etc. Finally, in 1948 they got independence.”