Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, on November 17, said that if the Bharatiya Janata Party does not speak about Hindus, then should the party speak about “Babar and Aurangzeb?” While campaigning for the BJP in Jaipur Rural district, he stressed, “We will proudly speak about Hinduism.”
“If we do not speak about Hindus in India, then for whom will we speak? On Babar, Aurangzeb? We will proudly speak about Hinduism,” Himanta Biswa Sarma said on November 17, responding to a question by a reporter about the usage of religion and Hindutva in politics as claimed by Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
Himanta Biswa Sarma said that his party should speak proudly of Hindu culture, which believes that the world is one.
“Hindu means Sarva Dharma Samabhava (equal respect to all religions). Hindus believe that the world is one. If we do not speak proudly of this culture, then what would we speak about? Till the time we are breathing, we will be speaking proudly of Hindus,” he said.
Earlier in the day, while participating in a rally in Rajasthan’s Dungarpur district, Priyanka Gandhi asked voters to be careful if emotions and religion are used in politics.
“You should be careful if emotions and religion are used in politics. If your emotions are being used, then you will have to be careful. You should think whether they are working for you or just taking the name of religion,” Gandhi said.
Responding to the guarantees promised by the Congress Government in different State assemblies, Himanta Biswa Sarma took a jibe at Congress MP Rahul Gandhi, saying that no one is willing to take his “guarantee.”
“Rahul Gandhi gives guarantees for the Congress. Who gives the guarantee for Rahul Gandhi? Even his mother cannot give him a guarantee. So what is the value of his guarantees? Someone should take his guarantee first,” the senior BJP leader said.
On Priyanka Gandhi’s claim that her grandmother and former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi had taught her ‘Gayatri Mantra’, Himanta Biswa Sarma said, “It is not Sanatan’s culture to speak out about who taught Gayatri Mantra to whom. It is not that only Indira Gandhi knew Gayatri Mantra. Every kid in India knows the Gayatri Mantra.”
The Assam Chief Minister also charged that the Ashok Gehlot Government in Rajasthan did not fulfil its promises on farm loan waiver and unemployment allowance.
“They had promised to waive farmer loans and unemployment allowances. However, they have not implemented any of these. On the other hand, they indulged in paper leaks and oppression of women,” he said.
On being asked if the Assam-like decision on ‘madrasas’ would be implemented in Rajasthan if the BJP comes to power, the Assam Chief Minister said, “All madrasas that get money and salary from the Government should be closed. If a community runs it independently, it is a different issue.”
Explaining his recent move to stop Government funding of madrasas in Assam, Himanta Biswa Sarma said, “In Assam, there were 700 madrasas where the Government gave the salary, which should be stopped. Madrasas with Government salaries should be closed. Madrasas run by the community should also be regulated. The students should have the right to education. And the student should also be given an exit road to become a doctor or an engineer.”
Hitting out at the institution of madrasas, Himanta Biswa Sarma said, “Madrasas should not be an institution to make ‘Mullas’. Child rights are involved in this. We need to open up options for children. We need wholesale reforms in the whole madrasa system. At places where the Government pays them salaries, like in Bengal or Assam (in the past), this should stop immediately.”
Rajasthan will go to polls on November 25, while voting concluded in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh on November 17. The first phase of Chhattisgarh elections took place on November 7.
Mizoram also went to polls on November 7, while Telangana will vote on November 30. The counting of all the state assembly elections is scheduled for December 3.
(with inputs from ANI)