Chandigarh: Amid the raging row over chanting of 'Bharat Mata Ki Jai', CPI (M) on Monday said slogans like 'Jai Hind', 'Hindustan Zindabad' and 'Inquilab Zindabad' are equally patriotic and accused the BJP of diverting attention of people from "real problems" by raking up such issues.
CPI (M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury charged BJP with attempting to "convert" secular, democratic republic of India into an "RSS version" of a 'Hindu Rashtra'.
"I will say 'Jai Hind', I will say 'Hindustan Zindabad' and I will say martyr Bhagat Singh's slogan of 'Inquilab Zindabad' and I think all are equally patriotic if not more. So, is patriotism connected with only one slogan?" Yechury told reporters.
Referring to 'Bharat Mata Ki Jai' slogan, Yechury said, "This is a deliberate diversionary tactic to take attention of people from their actual day-to-day troubles and the (BJP) government wants to escape its responsibility."
"This is a deliberate move to whip up nationalism in accordance with their (BJP) ideological construct of converting our secular, democratic republic of India into their RSS version of Hindu Rashtra," he alleged.
"Bharat Mata Ki Jai — their concept of nationalism and all this fits into that ideological project and that is what is the cause for spread of intolerance and this communalisation what we have seen," he said.
"Does this issue of 'Bharat mata Ki Jai' matter today?" he said.
"Farmers are dying and they are committing suicides. There is 26 per cent rise in suicide rate of farmers and in many parts of the country there is drought. In many parts, there is no water. There is a scramble for water even before the summer has set in fully..now these are the problems the government should address. Instead of addressing peoples' issues, and troubles the people are facing, they (BJP) want to divert attention to these sorts of issues, he said.
On the secret list of prominent Indians who have allegedly stashed money in offshore entities in tax haven Panama, Yechury described the revelations as a "very serious" issue and asked the government to probe it thoroughly.
"CPM considers it as very serious revelations but the authenticity of that will have to be established by the government. But this gives an indication that the promise made by the PM during election campaign that all the black money will be unearthed, and all money will come, and all of us were promised that Rs 15 lakh will come into our accounts.
"But for 2 years nothing has happened...I think it is the tip of the iceberg, this must be authenticated and proper and fast inquiry will have to be conducted. If there is anything illegal about this, then money should be brought back to country and put to use for peoples' welfare," he said.