RSS raising Ram Mandir issue in election time for polarisation of votes: Kharge

Nagpur: The Congress party on Saturday maintained its ambiguous stand on Ram Mandir issue citing matter being pending in Supreme Court. The senior party leader and Leader of Oppoosition in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge said since the matter is in apex court, he will not make any comment on the issue. “I can only say that the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and its outfits have renewed the Ram Mandir movement with an eye on the elections to be held soon. It is nothing new. Sangh wants to help BJP by raising the Mandir issue. It is a known fact,” Kharge said.

Commenting on ‘Sankalp Yatra’ of RSS that started on Saturday itself, Kharge said that indulging in such activities is the job of Sangh before elections. “RSS and its affiliates want polarisation of votes by raising Ram Mandir issue. Sangh which calls itself as a cultural organisation and distances itself from any ‘Vichardhara’ is undertaking such activities for benefit of BJP only,” the senior Congress leader stated.

Kharge was in Nagpur to attend a programme of Christian Co-ordination Committee on Saturday. The programme was organised by party leader Vijay Barse. MPCC President Ashok Chavan, State Joint In-Charge Ashish Dua and other party leaders participated in the event organised at Mecosabagh Methodist Ground,Kadbi Chowk, here.

Addressing the participants, Kharge said that Congress party has worked for establishing secular values in the country. “Currently, acts are being done to divide the nation. In this situation, it is necessary for all religion people and community members to unite for saving the Constitution. It will protect the rights of people. Hindu religion is for all but concept of Hindutva is being propagated. This is perilous. It is creating tension in the country and prople are being divided. Minority members are being attacked frequently. Congress played a significant role in independence of nation. The party only strived hard for maintaining secularism,” Kharge asserted.

Speaking on the occasion, MPCC President Ashok Chavan said that Congress always made efforts for peace in the country. Christian community is a part of the country. This community has contributed immensely in education and health services. Community people like Paul Ramaswami, J C Kamat and NKP Salve served the nation with aplomb. This fact could not be forgotten. The prevailing situation in the country is very dangerous. Mob lynching and attacks on minority communities is not good sign. Congress has worked for uniting people. Those who question Congress should first introspect themselves what they have done during independence struggle, Chavan said.

Other party leaders present in the programme include City Congress President Vikas Thakre, Atul Kotecha, StateSecretary; Adv Anil Thomas, National Vice-President of Minority Cell of the party; former MP Gev Avari, Anees Ahmed, Ashish Deshmukh, Abhijit Wanjari and others.