BJP attacks Rahul Gandhi for remarks over Lord Ram
New Delhi, Apr 11 (PTI) The BJP on Monday accused Congress leader Rahul Gandhi of questioning the existence of Lord Ram and alleged that "petty politics" of the Congress leader and Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and their "inciting" remarks have played a role in the recent violence in several states during Ram Navami processions.
Talking to reporters, BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra called Gandhi a "chunavi Hindu" (Hindu for electoral purposes), and alleged that he pretends to be a Hindu.
The BJP was reacting to a recent public address of Gandhi during which he quoted a BJP leader, whom he did not name, as saying that he did not believe in reincarnation.
Then he asked him, Gandhi said, if he does not believe in reincarnation, then how can he believe in Ram.
During the speech, Gandhi also spoke about his conversation with a Dalit youth who had tried to commit suicide after violence against Dalits in Una in Gujarat.
Citing the conversation, he said, "If my sister had been assaulted I would have stabbed and killed her tormentor before dying," he added.
Patra seized on the former Congress president's remarks to hit out at him. This shows that Gandhi has faith neither in the Constitution nor in the judiciary, he added.
With Gandhi claiming that he had no interest in power despite being born in its midst, the BJP spokesperson said these remarks aimed at "provoking" people and "questioning" Ram's existence underline his desperation.
The Gandhi family can go to any extent to get power, he alleged.
"The way some leaders are questioning the existence of Lord Ram and are inciting people... This should not have happened. Rahul Gandhi seems to be unable to tolerate that people in India have faith in Lord Ram. This shows the character of the Congress," he said.
Noting that Gandhi was described by his party as a "janeu-dhari Hindu", one who wears sacred thread, Patra said that by "attacking" Ram's existence, the Congress leader had shown himself to be someone who pretends to be a Hindu for electoral benefits.
The UPA government in an affidavit to the Supreme Court had said that there was no proof of Ram's existence, he said, adding that Rahul Gandhi is treading on the same path as his mother and Congress president Sonia Gandhi.
This resulted in people finishing off the existence of the Congress in elections, and the opposition party will be taught a lesson again, he said.
In this context, Patra also condemned Thackeray for his jibe at the BJP that what issue the ruling party would have raised if Lord Ram was not born.
Opposition leaders can find thousands of reasons to attack the BJP but this is "petty politics", he said.
Referring to the violence in a number of states during Ram Navami processions, he said it is natural that such incidents will happen when senior leaders like Gandhi and Thackeray make such remarks due to their "appeasement" politics.
Chief ministers of opposition-ruled states like Ashok Gehlot in Rajasthan have blamed right-wing groups for violence and have hit out at the BJP.