Amit Shah mocks ‘failed’ attempts to launch Rahul; says Uddhav’s Hindutva compromised

Home Minister says Rahul and Congress opposed the abrogation of Article 370 because they believe in appeasement politics

Updated - May 14, 2024 06:56 am IST

Published - May 14, 2024 05:42 am IST - Pune:

Amit Shah.

Amit Shah. | Photo Credit: ANI

Union Home Minister Amit Shah lambasted Congress MP Rahul Gandhi and his ally in the INDIA bloc Shiv Sena (UBT) chief Uddhav Thackeray in a campaign speech on Monday. 

He said Mr. Gandhi could never have launched India’s lunar mission Chandrayaan-3 given that his party had failed to launch him as party leader despite several attempts.

Addressing rallies in Dhule and Palghar (Scheduled Tribe reserved) Lok Sabha constituencies, he claimed that no less than 20 futile attempts were made by the Congress to “launch and re-launch” Mr. Gandhi as party leader.

“How could he [Mr. Gandhi] have launched Chandrayaan? Could he or a Congress government ever deal effectively with Pakistan? Are they capable of ending Naxalism or terrorism? Can they put India on the path to prosperity?” Mr. Shah said.

He was campaigning for the BJP’s (Mahayuti) candidates, Dr. Subhash Bhamre, who is seeking a third straight term from the Dhule Lok Sabha seat, and Hemant Savara — son of the late BJP leader Vishnu Savara, who is being fielded from Palghar.

Both seats go to the polls in the fifth and final phase of the Lok Sabha polls in Maharashtra on May 20.

Mr. Shah once again questioned the conviction behind Uddhav Thackeray’s ‘Hindutva’. He said it had been compromised the moment he allied with the Congress and Sharad Pawar’s NCP.

“Rahul Gandhi and the Congress opposed the abrogation of Article 370 because they believe in appeasement politics… I want to ask Uddhav Thackeray if he has a bit of morality left, to tell the people of Maharashtra whether Article 370 [which provided special status for Jammu and Kashmir] should have been removed or not,” Mr. Shah said.

Savarkar issue

He reiterated that Mr. Gandhi and the Congress had repeatedly insulted Hindutva ideologue V.D. Savarkar.

“What does Uddhav Thackeray have to say about this?” the Home Minister asked.

In November 2022, Mr. Gandhi’s remarks against Savarkar, made during the course of the latter’s ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ in Maharashtra, created schisms within the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA), while causing embarrassment to Mr. Thackeray’s Sena (UBT).

The Congress leader did eventually desist from further statements against Savarkar in a bid to keep the MVA intact.

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