New Delhi: Congress today questioned BJP’s attempt to project its “commitment to secularism” at its National Council meet, saying as long as the Opposition party ”pretends” doing it for votes, it will not succeed.
“BJP has to wake up to realize that this country is intrinsically secular and it will never accept any communal ideology. As long as they pretend to do it (professing secularism) for votes alone, they won’t succeed. But we do hope that the realization is dawning on the BJP that there is some problem with its communal ideology,” party spokesperson Renuka Chowdhary told reporters.
Keen to win more allies, BJP, which has been identified with the Hindutva tag, today decided to strive for an ”imaginative reprojection” of its “commitment to secularism” and reassured minority community that it does not support discrimination on the basis of religion.
L K Advani, while delivering the valedictory address at the Meet maintained that BJP needs to reassure minority community that “we brook no discrimination or injustice in dealing with different sections of our diverse society”.
The Congress also reacted sharply to the accusations of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, who said that Congress President Sonia Gandhi has a role in all the scams and the Prime Minister needs to answer.
Accusing Modi of resorting to “cheap sensationalism”, Chowdhary said that his accusations are “stupid and ridiculous”. ”It shows the level to which he has stooped. It underscores the mental bankruptcy to which he has stooped. If somebody is happy in that mire, let him be there. We are not going to stoop to that level to conquer,” Chowdhary said.
Attacking Gandhi, Modi is reported to have said that the UPA took the recent FDI decision on multi-brand retail a day after she came back from the US.
Asked about Advani’s allegation that CBI is the biggest ally of UPA government and that the Prime Minister has transferred his powers to 10 Janpath, Chowdhury said the BJP leader must be speaking based on his own experience when he was the Deputy Prime Minister during NDA regime.
“It is unfortunate and does not suit the stature of Advani. I can understand his frustration that he could not become the Prime Minister and remained PM-in-waiting only,” she remarked.
She also dismissed Advani’s remark that the UPA could not get along well with its allies in view of withdrawal of support from the UPA by TMC saying “We are OK with our allies. The BJP should first try to set their own house in
She also made light of a question on whether former Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa was joining the Congress as he had showered lavish praise on her party.
“The doors of the Congress party are always open for everybody and anyone is welcome,” she said in a lighter vein. Chowdhary also ridiculted the Opposition party for its remarks that the UPA government will not complete its term.
“It is strange if the BJP has engaged themselves in astrology business also,” she snapped.
Chowdhary also disagreed with contention that both Congress and BJP are going for populist measures like offering free houses for the poor and free water in poll-bound Gujarat , saying while Congress has always been committed to the poor, Modi is “scrambling to keep his vote bank intact”.
“For the Congress, we have always been doing these things all across the county. It is for the Gujarat Chief Minister that he has woken up suddenly. That is why he is scrambling to keep his vote bank. For us, it is nothing new. ‘Roti’, ‘Kapda’ and ‘Makan’ is something that we have always assured and we continue to serve in that direction. Now it is for him to clarify his stand,” Chowdhary said.