Rahul Gandhi insulted Hindus, his Lok Sabha speech full of lies, says Rajasthan CM Bhajanlal Sharma

Sharma said that Gandhi has made it a habit to denigrate Hindus for his own political gains and to appease a particular community.
Last Updated : 02 July 2024, 09:07 IST

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Jaipur: A rattled BJP,  which fielded several union ministers to counter Congress Leader of Opposition leader Rahul Gandhi for his comments on spreading violence and hatred in the name of Hindu religion and Hinduism, fielded Rajasthan Chief Minister Bhajanlal Sharma to take him on, in his first press conference six months after he took charge in the desert state.    

Sharma said Rahul’s comments about creating an atmosphere that spread violence and hatred in the name of Hinduism had insulted the 125 crore majority Hindu society because he clearly meant the majority Hindus are violent, full of hatred and untruthful. 

He talked about how the electorate had rejected Rahul thrice and how his launching had failed the third time. He said Rahul’s first speech as LoP in Parliament was disappointing and bereft of facts. He said Rahul failed to say anything about the issues mentioned in the President’s address to both Houses but only hinged on unsubstantiated facts. 

He said Congress Party has always followed the appeasement policy towards minorities and has believed in keeping its vote bank intact. He said Rahul’s holding a picture of Lord Shiva and politicising the entire issue calls for an apology. He criticised Rahul saying that he has woken up to the power of Lord Shiva in the last 4 to 5 years whereas a Hindu child gets acquainted with the divine power of Shiva from the day he is born and till his death, so every Hindu has Shiva in his heart and does not need Rahul’s certificate to declare himself as Hindu. Sharma talked at length about who is a Hindu, and that Hindus believes in Vasudev Kutumbakam that is ‘The World is One Family’. 

On Rahul’s criticism of the Agniveer Scheme, Sharma said that he is spreading lies about the scheme and insulting the jawans who lost their lives. He lambasted Rahul saying he has become the LoP but he doesn’t understand the rules, regulations and etiquette to be followed in the August House. 

Interestingly, this was the Chief Minister’s first press conference after he took over, surprising all in December 2023. In the presser, he did not talk about anything related to Rajasthan or its development. 

Sharma himself is a first time legislator, who was chosen by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and home minister Amit Shah. Sharma’s report card over the past six months has not been satisfactory, say poll analysts as BJP lost 11 seats out of the total 25 in the Lok Sabha elections. The BJP had swept all 25 seats in the 2014 and 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Although the Model Code of Conduct was imposed soon after he took over, Sharma’s position is itself not very steady, say political sources. There were even rumours of his replacement.   

Political analyst Narayan Bareth told DH that deputing senior ministers and chief ministers to counter Opposition leaders’ allegations and criticism is a protocol followed by the BJP. “So it is nothing new that Bhajanlal Sharma is saying all these to counter Rahul’s  Hindutva analogy. Either he has been directed by the central BJP or he has come out of his own to show his loyalty. That is the eco-system followed in the party.”

Some observers say BJP seems really flustered this time as it seems chief ministers have been instructed to counter’s Rahul’s take on Hinduism.

Says political analyst Sunny Sebastian, :“They have been seriously provoked. So they are having to depute Chief Ministers, other senior ministers to do their duties. As it is Congress has understood it needs to take the issue of religion head on and that there should be an open debate now. But what is disheartening is that BJP leaders are misinterpreting whatever was said by Rahul. He had actually accused the BJP of not following the essential tenets of Hinduism and charged it with spreading hate and violence against minorities. But leaders including Sharma are twisting the facts.

Also Sharma should have been shrewd enough as a political leader to talk about his Cabinet meeting, probably held today and his projects and plans for Rajasthan, instead of just dwelling on Rahul.  If this would have been Bhairon Singh Shekhawat, he would have definitely turned the presser to his own advantage, talked about his vision and then dwelled on the issue at hand. This “yes’ mentality and parchi ka sarkar adage seem to ring true and is a clear reflection of the Chief Minister’s political naivety. It shows his lack of experience. Also the presser was held in the BJP office on a political issue, which should be ideally presided over by the BJP president. ”

Published 02 July 2024, 09:07 IST

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