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Rahul attacks BJP; accuses it of playing politics of dividing people to win elections

Press Trust of India  |  Singapore 

Launching an attack on the BJP, today said there is a general atmosphere of "intimidation" in where "nasty form of politics" of dividing people are being played to win elections.

Speaking at a panel discussion at the prestigious Yew School of Public Policy in Singapore, Gandhi also said that there is a challenge to the institutional structure of

"If you ask me what am I proud about my is the idea of plurality. It's the idea that people in can say anything they want, do anything they want and they won't face any problem and that is being challenged...," he said.

"There is a particular type of politics that's not only happening in India but in a number of places - of dividing people, of using (their) anger to win elections and that's what is happening in India," he told the audience at the school, which is part of the

Commenting on the recent controversy of four senior judges holding an unprecedented press conference, Gandhi said, "They actually went out to the press and said listen we need the people to hear our voice because there is something fundamentally wrong."

"I don't know if you know the details about the comments they (judges) were making but the centre of the issue is the case of (BJP president) So, there is a challenge to the institutional structure of our country," he said, apparently referring to the issue of alleged mysterious death of BH Loya, who was hearing the sensitive Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case.

Shah was discharged as an accused in the case.

Gandhi alleged that there is a "very very aggressive and organised attack on the system and on the judiciary. If you speak to the press, if you talk to business people, they will also tell you that we feel intimidated. so there is a general atmosphere of intimidation."

The said that the idea of India that envisioned was that an India where everybody is comfortable regardless of religion, community, regardless of state.

"The idea that anybody coming to India, even the foreigner coming to India, feel comfortable in the country...that idea is being challenged now," he asserted.

"Where we are running into trouble now is the levels of violence and anger that you are seeing in India and this to me is a syndrome," he said, adding that "I'm proud to say that our vision is bringing people together."

Responding to a question, Gandhi accused the BJP and the RSS of indulging in anti-minorities politics.

"died protecting minorities. We, the party, have been protecting minority people for the last 70 years. We don't like an India where people are persecuted, where people are being beaten up for what they eat, what they say and what they wear," he said.

"controls the law making, he controls the UP police, he controls the police, he controls these things. An extremely nasty form of politics is playing out in India," Gandhi said, without elaborating.

Asserting that "we will fight him and we will defeat him" in the election, he said "very soon you will see India where everybody is respected and everybody is loved."

He also criticised BJP's policy, saying the had curbed terrorism by 2012 but it resurfaced after the BJP came to power in 2014.

"In 2014 when I went to I felt like crying. I saw what a bad political decision can do to years and years of policy-making," he said.

The BJP has lost the touch with the people and created a strategic problem in Jammu and Kashmir, he said and underlined the need to engage people and win their trust.

He also slammed the BJP government over its "bad record" of creating jobs, saying "our record is better".

Responding to a question on today, Gandhi said the Congress party had sought to pass the Women's Reservation Bill but it was opposed by other parties.

On India's foreign policy, he said India has to have peaceful relations with China, the US, Europe, Asean and others. He said India and should have a peaceful and relationship.

"One complaint I have of the BJP foreign policy in general... is that it is very tactical and episode," he said.

Answering a wide range of questions from the panel and audience, Gandhi spoke of India's advantage in connecting its skilled people through IT and

He noted Chinese of having factory operation based on large workforce, some running into 50,000 to 100,000 which, however, was not applicable to India due to different culture of working.

He also spoke of India's potential of developing a health care for the global markets.

Gandhi is on a two-day visit to and will meet tomorrow. He will then travel to where he will meet and members of the Indian community.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, March 08 2018. 19:50 IST