BJP Promoting ‘Hindutva Fascism’, Situation Not Favourable for Party Ahead of LS Polls: Sharad Pawar

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Shirdi: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) founder Sharad Pawar on Thursday accused the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of using a five-point agenda to promote “Hindutva fascism” in the country and said the political situation is not good for the saffron outfit ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.

Addressing party workers in the temple town of Shirdi in western Maharashtra’s Ahmednagar district, he said the ongoing “propaganda” that there was no alternative to Prime Minister Narendra Modi was “deceptive and false”.

The 83-year-old politician cited an example of the post-Emergency Lok Sabha polls in 1977 when opposition parties came together to take on the then-Prime Minister Indira Gandhi without presenting a PM candidate in run up to the elections.

The Rajya Sabha MP said he has held meetings with Prakash Ambedkar-led Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA) and will talk to ‘INDIA’ partners for making the Maharashtra-based political outfit a part of the opposition grouping which has been formed to take on the BJP in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.

Pawar said his party is firmly grounded on the ideas propagated by legendary social reformers like Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj, Jyotiba Phule and B R Ambedkar, but those in power do not seem to have the same set of principles.

He stated that importance is being given to cow, ‘gaumutra’ (cow urine) and ideology of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) leader late M S Golwalkar.

“The basis of this is Hindutva fascism and they are attempting to bring it into the country. They have undertaken a five-point programme,” Pawar said, attacking the BJP.

He said privatisation in all areas, increasing hatred towards the Muslim community and religious polarisation were components of this five-point programme.

The former Union minister said taking control of independent bodies like judiciary, the Election Commission, central agencies, the Reserve Bank, media, emphasis on “manuwad”, ultra nationalism, aggression towards Pakistan and creating a different situation in the country were other features of the programme.

“A five-point programme is being undertaken to promote fascism,” Pawar claimed.

He alleged that under the Modi government, women were insulted.

Citing an incident in the violence-hit Manipur, where women were disrobed and paraded last year, the NCP founder said heads must hang in shame over the episode.

Pawar slammed the Centre for not inviting President Droupadi Murmu for the inauguration of the new Parliament building in May last year.

He said the ruling party often asks who is the prime ministerial candidate of the opposition parties.

“Propaganda is being spread that the prime ministerial candidate should be announced today and if you don’t do so, then the country will not run. This propaganda is deceptive and false. There is no logic to the belief that there is no option to Modi,” Pawar maintained.

He said after assuming power at the Centre in 2014, the BJP announced several programmes and gave a host of assurances, but did not implement them and “cheated” people.

People have now started realising this, stated the former Union minister.

“The situation in the country is not favourable for the BJP,” said Pawar, whose party is a constituent of the national-level opposition bloc INDIA.

The Rajya Sabha member said BJP leaders have set a target of winning more than 400 Lok Sabha seats, out of the total 543, but the party is currently not in power in several states.

The BJP is out of power in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Delhi, Punjab, West Bengal, Bihar and Jharkhand, he pointed out.

Taking a dig at PM Modi, the former Union agriculture minister said assurances were made that farmers’ income will be doubled by 2022 and those without ‘pucca’ (concrete) houses will get one in urban areas, but these promises remain unfulfilled.

Modi had assured that by 2024-25 India will become a USD 5 trillion economy, but it is not even 50 per cent of that, Pawar said, adding the PM just gives “guarantees”.

“But the guarantee is not fulfilled. This has been observed many times,” said the veteran politician.

Pawar maintained the younger generation is feeling uneasy because of unemployment and referred to the December 13 Parliament security breach involving a group of people.

When our MPs sought to know what were their (those involved in security breach incident) demands and pressed for a statement from the prime minister and the home minister, opposition members were suspended, he stated.

Speaking about inflation, the NCP founder said fuel prices have become unaffordable for common citizens.

Pawar lashed out at the Maharashtra government over Maratha reservation and said the issue is being allowed to fester and this is causing “unease” among youths of the community.

He said while giving reservation to the Marathas in government jobs and education, the existing OBC quota should remain untouched.

(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – PTI)

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