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Business News/ Politics / Ayodhya Ram mandir ceremony made a 'political Narendra Modi function,' says Rahul Gandhi in Nagaland | Top quotes
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Ayodhya Ram mandir ceremony made a 'political Narendra Modi function,' says Rahul Gandhi in Nagaland | Top quotes

Speaking at press conference during Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra, Congress MP Rahul Gandhi said the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) “have made the 22nd January function a completely political Narendra Modi function”.

Congress MP Rahul Gandhi meets with a supporter during the Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra in Kohima, Nagaland on Tuesday. (ANI)Premium
Congress MP Rahul Gandhi meets with a supporter during the Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra in Kohima, Nagaland on Tuesday. (ANI)

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi resumed the Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra from Kohima, Nagaland, on Tuesday. In a press conference, Gandhi spoke on a host of topics — from Ram temple inauguration to discussion within the INDIA bloc to the "hybrid" nature of his latest yatra. Here's in detail what he said during the press conference on Tuesday:

1. On Ayodhya Ram Temple Pran Pratishtha ceremony

Congress MP Rahul Gandhi said the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) "have made the 22nd January function a completely political Narendra Modi function". He added, “It's become a RSS-BJP function and I think that is why the Congress president said that he would not go to the function."

ALSO READ: Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra: You will need THIS to hop on to Rahul Gandhi's 'Mohabbat Ki Dukaan' bus. Read here

Rahul Gandhi said his party members "are open to all religions, all practices. Even the authorities of the Hindu religion, the biggest authorities of the Hindu religion have made their view public about what they think about the 22nd January function that it is a political function".

"So it is difficult for us to go to a political function which is designed around the Prime Minister of India and designed around the RSS...," Gandhi added.

 

2. On being called "anti-Hindu"

Rahul Gandhi said those who keep a public relation with religion, try to take advantage of it. In contrast, "...Someone who actually believes in religion keeps a personal relation with it. He uses religion in his life," Gandhi added.

ALSO READ: ‘Gimmick to keep Rahul Gandhi busy...': BJP on Bharat Jodo Nyaya Yatra

"I do not try to take advantage of my religion, I have no interest. I try to live as per the principles of religion. I behave nicely with people, and I respect them. When says something to me, I don't respond with arrogance, I listen to them. I don't spread hatred. For me, this is the Hindu religion. I follow this in life. But I don't need to wear it over my shirt. Those who do not believe in it, need to wear it over their shirt," Gandhi said.

 

3. On Nitish Kumar turning down INDIA convener post

Rahul Gandhi said there is mutual respect and affection between the leaders of the Indian formation. "I am very confident that such small issues in the INDIA alliance will be resolved and together we will contest against BJP and defeat them," the Congress leader added.

 

4. On seat-sharing talks with INDIA bloc members

Rahul Gandhi reiterated that the status of the INDIA bloc is very good. He said the party is in conversation with the partners and the seat-sharing discussions are "going quite well". "Let's see where those discussions end," he added.

"But broadly, a lot of those are quite simple, they are not complex discussions. They are relatively easy discussions to have. So, I am quite confident that they will be resolved," Gandhi added. He said, "I see the INDIA alliance placed very well in taking on the BJP in 2024."

 

5. On Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra

Rahul Gandhi said the yatra is "an ideological" one and is designed to place certain issues on the table - "frankly to place on the table a huge amount of injustice that is taking place in this country...". He said the aim of 'Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra' is social justice, economic justice and political justice.

He said he wanted this to be a Yatra on foot. "But that would have been very long and there was not much time. So, this is a hybrid Yatra...," Gandhi said. "This is Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra. Its goal is social justice, economic justice and political justice, about raising issues," Gandhi said.

 

6. Why Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra began from Manipur

"We started from Manipur, there was a thought behind it as grave injustice has been done to Manipur. For the first time, violence went on for months in an Indian state and the PM and people of the BJP didn't even visit it. We then went to Nagaland. The PM had made a commitment to the people of Nagaland too. That commitment too was not met...," Rahul Gandhi said.

 

7. On Indo-Naga political issue

Rahul Gandhi informed that he has been speaking to a few Naga leaders and said "They are perplexed as to why no progress has been made". He said Nagaland had been given a commitment by the Prime Minister nine years ago and it has not been fulfilled.

"Clearly, there is a problem that needs resolution and that is a problem that will require conversation, listening to each other and working on implementing a solution. That is lacking as far as the PM is concerned...," Gandhi said.

Taking a dig at PM Modi, Gandhi said the prime minister of promises things without thinking them through. "I get this sense that people are disturbed that the Prime Minister's credibility is on the line and nothing has happened for 9 years...," he said.

 

8. On impact of Bharat Jodo Yatra from Kanyakumari to Kashmir

Rahul Gandhi said the Bharat Jodo Yatra from Kanyakumari to Kashmir was a "highly impactful and successful yatra that helped bring the people of India together". He said it transformed the political narrative, "providing an alternative to the divisive narrative of the BJP".

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Published: 16 Jan 2024, 04:15 PM IST
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