Saturday, October 26, 2013

Rahul gets it from Left & Right for ISI remark

NEW DELHI: Rahul Gandhi\'s comments on the Muzaffarnagar riots and the ISI fishing in troubled waters has come in for heavy criticism not just from the BJP but also from parties such as SP, CPI and JD(U), perceived to be favourably inclined towards Congress.

While the BJP demanded a probe into the matter and action against the erring intelligence officials who purportedly briefed Rahul as he is not authorized to get such briefings, Samajwadi Party, which extends outside support to UPA, and CPI criticized the Congress vice-president for raking up issues that sought to link Muslims to terrorism and could create hatred among the community.

The BJP\'s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi lit into Rahul for his comments. \"It is your responsibility to make public the names of such youth... If you do not disclose the names, then you should apologize publicly for defaming an entire community,\" he said, going on to ask, \"How is ISI freely spreading its influence in the lanes of UP under your very nose? What are you doing about it?\"

He rubbed it in by saying, \"You are behaving as a news agency, just giving news about what ISI is doing. You have to act against them.\"

SP leader Naresh Agrawal questioned the basis for Rahul\'s statement and said it cast doubts on the Muslim community, which was not good. \"Putting a question mark on Muslims is not good. To link Muslims with terrorists is not a good thing,\" Agrawal said, adding that if Rahul provided more details, Uttar Pradesh government would get the matter investigated.

Another SP leader, Azam Khan, demanded an apology from Rahul for his remarks. \"Rahul Gandhi should not speak irresponsibly... At one point, he blames BJP for the riots and at another, he raises doubt on the dedication of Muslim youths. Such a statement is not just putting ISI in the dock but also doubting the integrity of Muslim youths... He should apologize to Muslims for the same and if he cannot do that Sonia Gandhi should do it,\" Khan said.

CPI leader Atul Anjan said by making such statements, Rahul was trying to create hatred for Muslims in the country. \"I do not know who writes Rahul Gandhi\'s speeches. By making such a statement about the minority community over the Muzaffarnagar violence, he is once again trying to create tension and hatred in the country,\" he said.

JD(U), which has been cosying up to Congress of late, also did not spare Rahul. \"Nobody has a right to question anybody\'s nationalism... If some people are in touch with Pakistan for anti-India activities, they should be dealt with as per the law. But to drag the whole community into it is an insult for Muslims,\" party spokesperson K C Tyagi said.

The party also dismissed as a non-issue Rahul\'s invocations of the sacrifice of his family members. \"People gave his party more than 400 seats in 1984 when Indira Gandhi died and over 200 seats in 1991 when Rajiv Gandhi was killed. They have already paid their tribute. Emotional issues like caste, religion or family sacrifices are non-issues this time,\" he said.
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