Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has alleged that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) benefits from riots while inciting them. The Congress leader told ANI, on Sunday, that all of the accused (in the recent riots in different states) belong to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the BJP, and that the party that benefits from the riots is instigating them.
“Is Congress benefitting from riots? They are just defaming us. Why would Congress instigate riots? Hindutva is their agenda. They play the politics of polarisation in elections,” said Gehlot. Alleging that the BJP seeks votes in the name of Hindutva, he questioned the party if the Hindu voters would always vote for them despite “inflation and unemployment”.
Gehlot further asked why the BJP did not field a Muslim candidate from any of the 403 seats in Uttar Pradesh. “The BJP in UP polls didn’t field one Muslim candidate out of the 403 seats. What message is being sent to the countries in the world? You are gaining votes by polarising in the name of Hindutva. How long will the Hindus vote for you? There is inflation. There is no employment. There is also an atmosphere of tension,” he commented. Despite his demands for the Centre to investigate the violent incidents and uncover the reasons behind the riots across the country, CM Gehlot hit out at Union Home Minister Amit Shah, alleging that no probe had been ordered yet.
“A chief minister demands a probe to ascertain the reasons behind riots to avert them in the future. If there is an involvement of a political party, it would be exposed,” he said. “If people from any religion are involved, it would also come to the fore. The conspiracy of an internal or external hand would also be exposed. Why is Union Home Minister Amit Shah not showing courage to order a probe,” asked Gehlot.
In a potshot at Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the RSS, he further said that the Indian PM is an “RSS pracharak”. “The RSS should also accept it. Why don’t RSS and BJP merge? Theirs is fake nationalism. Ours is the nationalism of welfare of the nation,” said Gehlot.
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Meanwhile, the Congress party’s three-day Chintan Shivir concluded with the adoption of the Udaipur Declaration, on Sunday. Reportedly, the declaration introduces various structural changes to pave the way for the party’s resuscitation. One of its main objectives is to address the country’s “dynasty image” of the Congress party. The Congress Working Committee has also recommended that tickets for relatives of party leaders should be issued only if they have served in the party for at least five years.
Rajasthan’s Jodhpur and Karauli were both sites of communal violence recently. Several hours before Eid celebrations earlier this month, violence broke out in Jodhpur, CM Gehlot’s hometown. The city erupted in violence over the installation of Islamic flags at the Jalori Gate Circle. Reportedly, Gehlot has asked Home Minister Amit Shah to form committees headed by retired judges, to investigate the violence that took place in Karauli, Jodhpur, and in other states during Ram Navami and Hanuman Jayanti processions.
Delhi, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and West Bengal, all reported incidents of communal violence and arson during the festivals of Ram Navami and Hanuman Jayanti. The BJP held its ‘Hunkar Rally’ on May 5, in Rajasthan, attacking the Gehlot-led Congress administration on a variety of topics, including religious violence.